Which proteins to choose: animal or vegetable?
Protein is an essential part of the diet. It helps build, repair, and maintain body structures, including muscles.
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The problem is that the body does not store protein as it does with other macronutrients, so it must be consumed regularly through the diet. It is found in both plants and animals, with some differences.
In fact, proteins are composed of amino acids. Our body needs 22 types of amino acids to function properly, but it cannot produce nine of them, called essential amino acids.
These acids form proteins. One of the main differences between plant and animal proteins is their amino acid content.
The nutritional profile of foods
Complete sources are when the protein contains all nine essential amino acids.
Examples of animal protein include fish, eggs, dairy products, red meat, poultry and other sources such as wild boar, hare and horse.
As for vegetables, we use cereals, quinoa, buckwheat, lentils, nuts, beans, legumes, certain fruits, avocados, soybeans, hemp, rice, peas, etc.
Many other nuts, cereals and vegetables also contain large amounts of protein.
Most plant proteins are incomplete
That means they lack at least one of the essential amino acids, according to Medical News Today.
However, some plant foods are complete sources of protein, such as quinoa and buckwheat.
But it is also important to consider the nutrient profiles of the foods in question. Some animal proteins contain iron and vitamin B12, which plant foods do not.
On the other hand, vegetable proteins are rich in antioxidants and fiber, unlike animal proteins. The amount of saturated fat, which is higher in animal products such as red meat, is also heavy.
In general, the best way to meet your dietary needs is to vary your sources of nutrients, including protein.
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