Adult protein deficiency is a condition that most adults will not give a second thought to, and it is a condition that many thought only existed in children, young adults, or third world countries.
It is a condition that every adult needs to take seriously, wherever you live, as it can have some serious health implications.
In fact, if you do not get enough protein, your body will start to breakdown bone protein and calcium to supply the energy needs of our body.
Protein is the enzyme in our bodies that will have an impact on virtually every function within the body.
Our immune system, which protects us, demands a constant supply of either dietary or supplemented protein in order to continually build new cells in its daily battle against infections and disease.
As we age, our bodies undergo physiologic changes such as a decreasing bone density, muscle mass declines, as well as hormonal changes in both males and females.
Osteopenia, which occurs in both male and female adults, is a decline of bone material mass that will eventually lead to an increased risk of bone fractures.
Other possible risks of adult protein deficiency are a loss of balance and gait issues, tooth decay and other oral conditions, as well as possible vertebral and back issues.
So what exactly is protein, how does it function?
Proteins in our bodies, especially as we age, continue to be absolutely indispensable.
This include both the growth as well as the maintenance of virtually every type of cell within our bodies.
The protein that we intake is not only critical for development of bones and teeth, but it is also critical for the replenishment of lost blood.
It also helps in the healing of wounds and scars and it the replacement of dead or dying cells.
In addition, our hair and our nails must have protein in order to remain healthy.
In situations in our bodies where the fat or the carbohydrates that we intake are inadequate, your body will pull or degrade proteins to generate the calories that your body must have in order to function properly.
The protein in our bodies are essentially the building blocks for life, and they consist of a chain of 20 varying kinds of amino acids that are classified as essential and non-essential amino acids.
The eight essential amino acids are acids that are bodies cannot synthesize.
As a result they must be supplied by our diets, or supplements, and the twelve non-essential acids can be produced by our bodies.
However, in order to be produced, there must be an ample supply of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen that are supplied by the fats and carbohydrates that will have fed into our body.
The bodily process of digesting proteins all begins in our stomachs. The acids in our stomachs secrete protein which makes it susceptible to the degradation process by our enzymes.
Digestion into our body is than finished in the small intestine where single amino acids as well as peptides are absorbed into our blood stream.
Some of the proteins that we will eat and digest will contain all of the amino acids that are necessary to build new protein, and these are referred to as complete proteins.
Most animal sources of protein are considered complete.
However, other sources of proteins lack one of more of the essential amino acids, and are there for are considered incomplete.
These sources of proteins usually come from nuts, vegetables, fruits, and grains.
In adults especially, the proper intake of proteins keeps your immune system functioning and helps to produce enzymes for cellular growth.
Conversely a protein deficiency in adults will result in several adverse affects.
This could include muscle loss, weight loss causing fatigue and weakness, an increased frequency of infections, and a condition known as edema, which is fluid retention.
It can also cause hair loss in both men and women.
If you are a male adult experiencing hair loss, how is your protein intake?
There are three basic components that adults must have to remain healthy as we age, water, fiber, and protein.
Protein deficiency will occur most often in overweight as well as dangerously underweight adults, pregnant women, and geriatric adults, especially in relationship to bone and skeletal preservation.
Most adults have very little knowledge as to what their protein requirements are, and as a result they do not come close to adequate intake levels.
The adult body will require between 0.5 and 0.9 grams of protein per lean muscle mass, and the figure can change drastically depending on your levels of physical activity.
In young adults, the skeletal muscle accounts for about 45 percent of your total weight, but by the age of 70, it accounts for only roughly 30 percent.
There is a large percentage of the medical community that now feels that the older we get the requirement for protein increase; it does not stay the same, especially to maintain nitrogen equilibrium.
Nitrogen balance is extremely important to adults in reference to the proper protein intake. This balance is an indication of protein syntheses and degradation.
A positive nitrogen balance basically indicates that protein turnover in our body is adequate in that it provides a continuous exchange of material and energy to the body.
This is extremely important for adults, as a non growing body is constantly renewing itself and in the process creating stability.
One of the best food sources for adults to prevent protein deficiency other than meat, poultry, or seafood, would be a common egg, and is by far the least expensive.
Eggs have the essential amino acids required as well as a very high amount of protein.
All adults face the possibility of having a protein deficiency, but none more than vegetarians.
However, if you are a vegetarian, you must also be aware the besides protein deficiency, so will face a very large risk of being deficient in both Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B 12.
Protein adult deficiency is finally starting to get some long overlooked research and acceptance, that indeed, adults can also be deficient with protein in their everyday lives.