Why People Suffer From Protein Deficiency?
We live such busy lives sometimes it gets to be quite a juggling act to eat the right combination of carbohydrates, proteins, fruit, vegetables and fibre. More importantly, how is it the vegetarians in the Western world suffer from protein deficiency but not vegetarians in Asia?
Well it appears to be on how often vegetarians in the frantic West take short-cuts on their diet. They do not eat chicken or other high protein foods occasionally to top up their vegetable diet (generally lower in protein than meat eaters and non-vegetarians).
So how can we especially tell if we are not eating enough protein? Let’s investigate:-)
Signs Of Protein Deficiency
Protein is essential for many muscle functions, the immune system and the efficient movement of joints.
So it makes sense that problems are going to occur with these areas when there is a protein deficiency. These include but are not limited to the following symptoms:
#1. Aching Joints
During autumn and winter our body stores up protein and fat to insulate us from the winter cold. It just so happens that most of the protein is stored around joints, in the synovial fluids specifically.
When you do exercise is autumn or winter the protein is first taken from the synovial fluid and joints areas to rebuild muscle and joints. This then results in painful muscles and joints since these areas are now protein- deficient, being used up first. Even visits to the physiotherapist, masseur or chiropractor will not remove the pain. What is required is a change in diet.
#2. Low Energy
You find yourself to be tired and lacking energy all the time. Of course there can be other causes for this but this is one of the symptoms. The key is whether you have the other five symptoms at the same time. At the same time as having low energy you will feel more moody too.
#3. Excess Water Storage
The condition called Edema is when you have excess fluid storage. A diet that is too low in protein intake causes this condition. The noticeable symptoms are swollen feet, ankles although excess fluid retention can occur almost anywhere in the body.
#4. Hair Loss
It sounds a strange symptom but at least it is highly noticeable! Alternatively your hair may be brittle. When your body has low protein reserves it stops adding protein to your hair and nails. In terms of the latter, your nails, they will have white lines running vertically down indicating current protein deficiency.
#5. Muscle Turns To Flab
The reason for this is the body will turn on itself, taking protein from wherever it can get it from within the body. Previous muscle turns to flab.
It is worth noting too that you will also be more prone to infections and influenza as your immune system is basically weak. In addition you may even faint and have regular headaches.
So there you have it, five signs to look for to indicate you have too little protein in your diet. Now you know that how do you increase protein? Well, if you look at the meat side, increase your intake of beef, chicken or other meats.
On the non-meat side, increase your consumption of dairy (milk, cheese & yoghurt), nuts & seeds, legumes (beans) and eggs. The encouraging thing is that once you know you have too little protein in your diet you can easily fix it:-)