Attention all women, don't be fooled into thinking protein is just for bodybuilders. Go Vita discovers a high protein diet can be beneficial for your energy levels and waistline too.

Protein is the most abundant constituent in the human body besides water. It is largely responsible for the structure of body cells and is essential for growth and development. Amongst other functions, it makes up the structure of your hair, nails, muscles, tendons, and ligaments, and is required for hormonal and enzymatic function. The recommended intake of protein is between 0.7 to 1.7 grams per kilogram of body weight, though this increases if you are if you are pregnant, an athlete or a vegetarian or vegan.

Your body continuously breaks protein down into its individual building blocks the amino acids, and then re-assembles the amino acids into the bodily structures it requires. It's vital that you eat some protein every day because although the body can create some of the amino acids it needs, others (termed essential amino acids) are only available from your diet. So the right balance of amino acids is important.

Daily protein can be obtained from:

Animal sources – such as meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, and dairy foods, these are complete proteins, providing all the essential and non-essential amino acids your body needs.

Vegetarian sources – such as whole grains and legumes (great sources include chickpeas, lentils, quinoa, pepitas, chia seeds, soya beans, amaranth, and even spirulina), generally these makeup around a third of our daily protein intake. Unlike animal proteins, they provide both fiber and phytoestrogens.

On the downside, vegetable proteins are incomplete proteins – they don't contain the full spectrum of amino acids. As a consequence, you need to consume a variety of plant-based proteins throughout the day in order to ensure all the amino acids are present in your diet and your body can make the best use of the protein you consume.

Increasing your protein intake will:

Make you feel fuller for longer

Keep your energy levels high

Support muscle recovery after exercise and tone up

Manage cravings for sugar and refined carbohydrates

Which protein is which?

Whey is a by-product of cheese manufacture, it contains little fat or lactose due to processing, hence is easily digested.

Whey protein isolate (WPI) is a high protein (usually between 90-96 percent) low fat, low carbohydrate, and low sugar supplement. This is the premium protein, ideal for use in the first thirty minutes after training to assist with muscle recovery and muscle building.

Whey protein concentrate (WPC) provides the body with a steady supply of protein throughout the day and night (WPC has a typical protein content of over 80 percent), ideal to sustain hunger pangs in between meals, and for muscle recovery and development. Ideal as an everyday protein supplement for energy, muscle recovery, and toning.

Blended protein WPI and WPC are ideal for carbohydrate conscious individuals leading busy hectic lives wanting a protein drink containing a low fat and low carbohydrate content. A protein for everyone, every day, whether for general fitness or health and wellbeing.

Whey protein isolates with added thermogenic such as l-carnitine, choline, inositol or hydroxycitric acid will assist in burning body fat into energy and assist the liver in its never-ending task of fat breakdown. Being naturally high in protein and very low in fat and carbohydrates, it helps with lean muscle recovery and development and helps to reduce hunger. Ideal for weight loss and building lean muscle.

Breakfast Smoothie

30g protein powder

Almond/rice/lite milk or water

1 handful mixed berries

1 teaspoon chia seeds

1 tablespoon NutriVital Good For You Foods LSA

Blend together and enjoy!


Peter Balogh

Natural Health Consultants Au

Author's Bio: 

Diploma of Natural Science (including Herbal Medicine), Adv Dip of Nutritional Medicine, Peter Balogh is a Naturopath with an Advanced Diploma of Nutritional Medicine and over 20 years’ experience in successful practice.