Protein is an essential macronutrient for muscle growth, repair and maintenance. It also contributes to feelings of satiety, which can make it easier to stick to a calorie deficit for weight loss.
The average healthy diet should contain 20-30% of calories from proteins. A single gram of protein contains 4 calories. Protein is made up of amino acids, which are grouped together by peptide bonds to form polypeptides. The body uses these molecules to create proteins that form the tissues of your muscles, organs, skin, and nails. You can get proteins from animal sources like meat, fish, eggs, dairy products like curd and paneer, or plant sources like pulses, beans, lentils, nuts and seeds.
In addition to providing the body with essential nutrients, protein is also thermogenic and increases a person’s resting metabolic rate. This is in contrast to carbohydrates and fat, which do not provide a significant amount of energy in the form of heat.
The recommended daily intake of protein for adults is 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight. This translates to about 60 grams of protein for someone who weighs 160 pounds. Keeping track of your protein consumption with a food app or log can help you to ensure that you are getting enough protein while staying within your calorie budget.