Why is protein important for your body?

    Protein is the buzz word these days! Everyone knows and has heard about it on various social media platforms. But no one really thinks that they are a victim of this deficiency. Contrary to belief, most studies, in India have shown that around 70% of the population is protein deficient (as per Times of India).

    Protein is a macronutrient that provides energy to the body. What makes protein unique is some of its other functions:

    • Supports growth and development
    • Is a part of all the cells in our body including hormones, enzymes etc.
    • Crucial to muscle development
    • They form the defense line of your body

    So what happens if you are protein deficient or eating too little protein? In an attempt to preserve the proteins for all the essential functions of the body, the secondary or less important functions take a backseat which is visible in the form of these signs and symptoms:

    • Stunted growth in children and reduced muscle mass in adults
    • Hair loss, poor skin quality, brittle nails
    • As the immunity is affected, chances of infections increase
    • More susceptible to bone fractures
    • Increased appetite
    • Water retention

    The more severe the protein deficiency, the worst the health issues that reduces the quality of life.

    Long story short, it is important to consume sufficient protein, especially in a country like ours where cereals such as rice, wheat etc. are consumed predominantly.  It is critical to consume both sufficient as well as good quality protein. The recommendations for protein range from 0.8 g to 1.2 g/kg body weight depending on your activity level. However, 60 g of protein per day is recommended for an average Indian. The best and easiest sources of protein are egg, whey protein supplements, chicken, dairy products, soy, plant protein supplements, pulses, dals etc.

    One drawback in consuming protein supplements today is that when you suddenly consume too large quantities in comparison to what the body is used to, one faces digestion issues like bloating or uneasiness. An easy way to bypass this negative aspect is to consume protein supplement by dividing doses throughout the day.

    However, in some cases indigestion persists. In our body, once the protein is consumed, proteases (enzymes) breaks down protein into small units (amino acids) which once digested can travel to the body tissues that require it.  These enzymes can also be consumed orally to provide the same beneficial effect when consuming large amounts of protein.

    Today in the market you’ll find Hydrolysate. It is the most broken down form (peptides) of proteins that are easily digested in the body. But these are usually made by treating the protein with chemicals.

    Recently I was looking for a Protein Supplement with enzymes (Prohydrolase) added to it and I chanced upon BodyFirst®. With a unique sachet concept and a great taste, this product is just what I was aiming for. With science to back the product, it is a modern day practical solution of ensuring individuals meets their protein requirement on a daily basis in the best form. Kudos to BodyFirst for creating a consumer friendly product with an even more convenient packaging.

    Basically, Enzymes are biological molecules (mainly proteins) that are naturally present in our body that help break down of proteins. They act as catalysts to the biochemical reactions within the body by increasing the speed of the reaction and helping digestion. Our body produces proteases (enzymes) of its own to digest protein. When whey protein is not broken into its smallest composition by these proteases, it stays in the digestive tract for a longer time period, causing discomfort such as cramping, bloating, nausea, pain etc. BodyFirst Protein supplements provide these enzymes, named Prohydrolase to ensure that protein is absorbed to the maximum to get more benefits.

    ProHydrolase®, a registered trademark of Deerland Enzymes, Kennesaw, USA, is a formula that contains a blend of enzymes to enhance the digestibility and absorption of protein, thereby increasing its bioavailability.

    All their Whey Protein supplements also have Probiotics in it. Probiotics are the “good” or the “helpful” bacteria that live in our gut. They play an important part in keeping our entire system well-balanced. When our micro biome is balanced, the probiotics work hard to keep us energetic and healthy. Approximately 80% of your immune system is located in your gut. Thus your immune function balance hinges on a healthy gut environment.

    The best thing about consuming BodyFirst Whey Protein is its convenience and hygiene. I can easily carry these sachets wherever I am travelling without having to worry about its space or weight.

    After all, good nutrition is the foundation to a health self-sufficient nation. Let us not just be aware of the subject of protein deficiency but act on quickly and continuously.

    Tiana Rodrigues
    Tiana Rodrigues
    Tiana Rodrigues is a Nutritionist with BodyFirst®. She has completed her Masters in Foods, Nutrition and Dietetics from Mumbai University with an Honours Certificate in Human Nutrition. She is a member of the Indian Dietetic Association. Tiana specialises in nutritional counselling and motivational counselling.

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