Are You Getting Enough Protein?


Older Couple Exercising

At any age, nutrition is critical to human development and survival. Through the intake of nutrients, your body can repair, rebuild, replace and regenerate tissue and bone. Sarcopenia is the term used by medical professionals to describe the degenerative loss of skeletal muscle mass and function. As you grow older, this disease can affect your balance, strength, gait and overall ability to perform tasks. For centuries, scientists believed this type of frailty was inevitable, and as you aged, would naturally lead to a more sedentary lifestyle. 

Today, many Americans are redefining what it means to age healthy, and most have a desire to continue participating in the activities they always enjoyed. A recent survey conducted by AARP and Abbott found, while a majority of seniors consider themselves to be in good health, most wanted to have more energy. As a nutrient, dietary protein is important for building body tissue and maintaining energy levels. Your skin, muscles, bones and organs are rebuilt (in part) by protein. Plus, most of the hormones and enzymes needed to regulate your energy level are made of protein.

Current expert opinion suggests that the Recommended Daily Allowance for protein may not be adequate for aging adults. To protect against sarcopenic muscle loss and to prevent disabilities, nutritionists now estimate that older adults need a minimum of 1.2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. This is a considerable increase from the adult protein intake recommendation of 0.8 grams. In addition, medical researchers recommend an adequate amount (25 to 30 grams) of high-quality protein be consumed at every meal.

The proteins in your body are constantly being broken down and need to be replaced. Unlike carbohydrates and fats, the body does not store amino acids, so there is a constant need for a daily supply of dietary protein to digest the food you eat into amino acids. These amino acids are then used to replenish the lost proteins in your body. To learn more about healing foods and proper supplementation, contact the Metabolic Research Center nearest you. Our proactive approach to health and wellness can help you manage the progression of many diseases associated with the aging process.

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