Protein is a type of food that includes meats and dairy products such as milk and cheeses and eggs. But what is protein itself?
Protein breaks down further into what are called amino acids — organic compounds made of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen and sometimes sulfur. There are 22 amino acids that, in various combinations, make up protein.
Our bodies make many of the amino acids, but not all. Eight of these amino acids are referred to as "essential" (as in essential amino acids), meaning that our bodies don’t make them and so we must get them from somewhere else. If we are missing just one of these "essential" amino acids, it can cause trouble for the body. But if you eat eggs or meats, including red meat, you’re covered.
Diets lacking protein
If you don’t eat protein, you might not grow as tall as you should, your body’s ability to manufacture hormones could be hindered, and your blood might not clot easily enough if you cut yourself. Further, a diet lacking in protein could lead to coronary heart disease and bad teeth.
Protein also helps to regulate the acid-alkaline balance of your body. I’ve read that if your body is too much on the acidic side, it opens the door for cancer to take root.
According to the Nourishing Traditions cookbook, proteins from the vegetable kingdom are incomplete. That means that one or more of the "essential" amino acids are missing. And if you don’t get all these essential amino acids from somewhere, you could cause yourself some physical problems.
You must consume all of the essential amino acids in order for a proper chemical reaction to occur within the body — that is, the beneficial use of the protein by the body. This also causes the acid-alkaline balance of your blood and tissues to stay in a healthy range. You get these from animal products such as milk, eggs and meats, including red meats. Miss just one and all that chewing and digesting was for naught, however good it tasted.
You obtain minerals from animal protein. Animal products are also a great source of vitamin A and D, dietary fat, and are a complete source of protein, meaning all the "essential" amino acids are present. Apparently, proteins don’t work well without dietary fat. Lucky us that the fat is already present in the meat and eggs.
Caveat Emptor! Let the buyer beware — when eating proteins from the animal world, be sure to eat meats that do NOT contain antibiotics, hormones (such as estrogen), preservatives, fungicides, etc., as these will throw off the chemical reaction in your body. It is also suggested that one consume raw organic milk when you do drink milk.
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