Most Common Protein Myths Most People Believe

Protein 101
October 21, 2019

Most Common Protein Myths Most People Believe

Protein is a macronutrient ringleader, which has remained a mystery for many. One might hear protein discussions at gymnasiums or at health clinics and yet it evades the healthy diet of many. Rather today it is shrouded by myths and with market being awash with protein supplements like bars, snacks and drinks. So why do we need protein?

Proteins are considered as the building blocks of our life: without which our bodies won’t be existing; cells of our body need proteins for growth and development – to make new cells, repair the damaged tissue and cells. These building blocks are used for many important functions in the body, including growth and repair of muscle, connective tissue and skin. Since protein is present in every cell of our body, it’s not only important to consume enough but also consuming these in the right quantity is significant for our body. Despite its popularity, this macronutrient is subject to countless myths. And there are few protein myths that just won’t go away! Allow us to clarify these myths:

MYTH 1: Majority of Protein only comes from milk and meat

TRUTH: Nearly every food on this planet contains protein, although the composition will vary. Along with animal-based proteins, one can also consume plant-based proteins such as legumes, soy, beans etc. Protein comes in two forms ‘Complete and Incomplete’. Complete protein like milk, eggs and soy are among other food sources that contain all the 9 essential amino acids required by the body to remain healthy and fully functional. While the incomplete protein such as legumes, vegetables etc. lack few essential amino acids.

Bottom Line: Protein can be consumed from a variety of sources – plant and animal.

MYTH 2: Vegetarians do not get enough proteins

Truth: “I would like to go vegetarian, but I am afraid that I wouldn’t get enough sources of Protein”, is often a concern expressed by many people today. People largely associate meat with “protein house” and struggle to find their replacement with plant-based proteins. However, if you eat a well-balanced diet, there is high probability that you will meet your daily requirements, irrespective if you follow a plant-based diet. Additionally, the notion that complete protein should be consumed from single food or single meal is yet another myth. Consuming different sources of protein from a variety of foods during the day, is as fruitful as consuming them all at once.

Bottom Line: You can get enough protein from plant-based diet.

MYTH 3: More the Better

Truth: People who are looking to reduce weight and slim down often consider the approach of Low Carb and High Proteins in their diet. This is mainly because protein consumption reduces one’s appetite. Since calories from proteins takes longer time to break down than most foods and other carbs. This means a person will feel fuller stomach for a longer period. However, it is important for one to consider how many calories you consume each day, which in-turn determines your weight loss or weight management.
While, active individuals like athletes and bodybuilders choose to consume higher amount of protein, but they burn those quickly in the process. On the other hand, for a person leading a normal lifestyle, by consuming excess protein he/she might end up gaining weight and loosing muscle health. Hence, the healthiest way in both cases is to eat a balanced diet ­- which is neither too high nor too low in protein.

Bottom Line: Consuming the right amount of protein largely depends on various factors and the kind of lifestyle one leads.

MYTH 4: Excess protein damages your kidney

Truth: One reason this myth has perpetuated is because research has shown that consuming excessive protein affects your kidneys. However, consuming large quantities of protein only affects your kidney if one already has a chronic kidney problem or Liver disease. In general, consuming excess protein only leads to hyperfiltration of the kidneys ­– which isn’t a bad thing for one’s health, provided there is some level of activity or movement involved in their life. It simply means that your kidneys are adapting to higher protein intake levels based on your diet. This in turn helps to increase one’s metabolic rate. Lastly, the key to protein in your diet is finding the right balance based on your activities and body type.

Bottom line: Excess protein is harmful only if you already have a chronic kidney disease; if you have an active lifestyle high protein consumption is not risky.

Protein-O-Meter

The amount of protein you need depends on your weight, goals, and lifestyle. Protein-O-Meter will take your body-composition and activity level into account to estimate your protein needs. Start with the number given by the calculator, see how that makes you feel, and try adjusting your protein level up or down to see what amount makes you feel good and perform well!

Protein Index

Find out all about whole foods that are protein heroes! Achieve your fitness goals by finding out just how much protein you should incorporate to stay nourished.

Protein-O-Meter

The amount of protein you need depends on your weight, goals, and lifestyle. Protein-O-Meter will take your body-composition and activity level into account to estimate your protein needs. Start with the number given by the calculator, see how that makes you feel, and try adjusting your protein level up or down to see what amount makes you feel good and perform well!

Protein Index

Find out all about whole foods that are protein heroes! Achieve your fitness goals by finding out just how much protein you should incorporate to stay nourished.

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