We shouldn’t think of protein as just a muscle-building agent.
Everyone needs protein. Proteins enable every cell to function. They help to maintain, rebuild, and repair muscle.
Protein is a building block for the skin, nails, bones, and blood, and it makes up hormones, enzymes, and antibodies.
Our bodies create some proteins, but others must come from the diet. Protein food, such as whey, meat, and tofu, enable the body to create the proteins it needs.
Managing blood sugar
Consuming additional protein may affect the likelihood of having blood sugar spikes.
Back in 2003, researchersTrusted Source suggested that a high-protein diet might help people with diabetes to manage blood sugar levels. During a 5-week study, people who followed a high-protein diet had lower glucose levels after meals.
In 2010, however, results of a studyTrusted Source that looked at 146 South Asian Indians living in the United States suggested that those who followed a high-protein diet also had a higher risk of type 2 diabetes. However, it was unclear what caused the link.
In 2017, a small study of 22 people found that including whey protein in the diet might help some people with type 2 diabetes.
The study found that whey powder stimulated insulin secretion in people with normal body weight and triglyceride levels. However, in those with obesity, whey protein appeared to trigger an increase in glucose levels.
The researchers called for more investigation into how whey powder affect the gut microbiota and plasma metabolites in order to understand how this form of protein might help some people.
Scientists need to carry out more research to find out how adding protein to the diet might affect people with diabetes.
Apart from playing a key role in bodily processes, protein may also have other benefits for people with diabetes.
Protein requires insulin for metabolism, as do carbohydrate and fat, but has minimal effects on blood glucose levels. In well-controlled diabetes, large amounts of protein have the potential to contribute to glucose production, minimally increase blood glucose levels, and require additional small amounts of insulin.
Whey is a natural by product of cow’s milk, and, in powdered form, one of the most popular fitness supplements available. There’s nothing inherently risky about whey protein by itself.
Firat Zan : Protein itself — in any form — may aid weight loss, however. Of the three macronutrients — carbohydrate, protein and fats — protein is the most satiating nutrient. According to a review article published in Annual Review of Nutrition in July 2016, a higher protein intake can reduce hunger to help control calorie intake.
In a study published in June 2017 in Obesity Facts, participants with metabolic syndrome who adhered to a high-protein diet lost significantly more weight than those who ate a standard-protein diet.
How Much You Really Need
So, increasing your protein intake may help you lose weight even if you don’t work out. But how much of an increase?
The recommended daily intake for protein determined by the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academies of Medicine is 46 grams per day for women and 56 grams per day for men. That’s not much. If you eat three square meals, that’s about 15 to 19 grams at each meal.
However, some experts think the protein RDI is too low. At the Protein Summit 2.0 held in Washington, D.C. in October 2013, over 60 nutrition scientists came together to discuss research on protein and its effects on human health. According to a summary published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in June 2015, the general consensus was that a higher protein intake would benefit not only weight-management but also metabolic health and aging.
In the 2017 Obesity Facts study, the standard protein group ate about .8 grams per kilogram per day — equivalent to the RDI. The high-protein group consumed 1.34 grams per kilogram of bodyweight per day. As an example, a 150-pound person eating a standard-protein diet would need 54 grams of protein per day, while a 150-person eating the high-protein diet would need 91 grams daily.
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