Proteins are compounds found in our bodies that are composed of atoms of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen. They are arranged in the body as strands of amino acids, which are the building blocks for protein. These proteins are arranged into different shapes which allow them to perform different tasks in the body such as repel or attracting water, containing some minerals or vitamins or have the ability to form with other proteins to create a functional group.
Proteins have three main functions in our body, growth and maintenance, regulatory roles and energy production. Proteins provide our body with “building materials” (amino acids) that assist in the growth and repair of body tissues. They are also a part of almost all the structures in the body like our skin, nails, hair, membranes, muscle and teeth to name a few. Proteins second role is to regulate various functions within the body, they help regulate enzyme and hormone production, fluid and acid-base balance, and the transportation of nutrients into and out of cells. Lastly protein can be used for energy production, protein contains 4 calories per gram, which can be converted into energy to meet the body’s needs.
On average about 15% of your daily calorie intake should be from proteins.