Recent studies conducted in India reveals nearly 90% of vegetarians and 85% of non-vegetarians in the country are protein deficient. Sad thing is, most of these people do not even know they have a protein deficiency. But this problem is not just induced by poverty. Ignorance plays a big role as well. So how to identify whether you have protein deficiency and how to correct it?
Protein is a combination of 20 different amino acids. This provides the body muscles with needed energy. Protein plays a major role in the secretion of enzymes, hormones, and production of hemoglobin. Additionally, it helps with the development of new body cells, healing wounds and development of immunity. Protein is best when it is taken through foods.
Who will have it?
Irrespective of age and gender, anyone can have it including children and old age people.
How to Find out?
- Change in hair color, hair density, hair loss, hair breakage.
- Easily breakable of nails
- Feeling tiresome and weak most of the time
- Getting angry at losing patience very easily
- Frequent occurrence of fever and headache
- Becoming more vulnerable to infections
- Children will have big belly with skinny hands and legs
- Visible bone lines all over the body
What are the ill-effects?
- Feeling of weakness
- Reduction in Metabolism
- Retards brain development process
- Slow healing of wounds
- Occurrence of Marasmus and Kwashiorkor diseases
How much Protein do we really need?
We need around 50 to 60 grams of protein on a daily basis as suggested by National Institute of Health. For every kilogram of our body weight, we need a gram of protein. Which means if you weight 60 kilograms then you need 60 grams of protein a day. But this can vary with individuals physical work and lifestyle. So it is better to consult a trained professional to get to know the right amount of protein you would need.
Some Quick Tips
- It is a best practice to include pulses on a daily basis into your diet.
- Sports professionals, people who exercise regularly would need excess levels of protein. So they can consume protein supplements to satisfy their needs. But, it’s always better to consult a dietitian before consuming any supplements.
- Children, pregnant women, and breastfeeding ladies must consume high levels of protein.
- Kids should drink a glass of milk every day. If they do not like milk, it can be replaced with cottage cheese or other milk products.
- Accidentally wounded patients, people who undergone surgeries, and affected by infections must consume foods rich in protein.
- Victims of fire accidents need protein for the formation of new skin cells, so they need to consume foods rich in protein.
- Non-vegetarian foods have high levels of protein. But vegetarians can get their needed supply of protein from milk or soy products. 250 grams of soya beans is equivalent proteins found in 1 kilogram of meat or 24 eggs.