There has always been an amount of uncertainty surrounding protein, whether in powder form or increasing the amount in your food. Many have come to associate it with men looking to bulk up and build more muscle. However, protein is becoming more and more normalised among women looking to tone their bodies and lead a healthy lifestyle.
For the girls out there still unsure about consuming more protein, we’ve put together a list of reasons why protein isn’t just for the boys:
Protein is key to helping build up the muscle fibres after exercising. Due to a difference in hormones, this will mean different things for men and women. Although, all in all, it means that your muscles will become stronger, data has shown that men can build larger muscles due to primarily larger fibres, whilst women’s muscles remain slender. Toning is all about tearing the muscle fibres and allowing them to rebuild, and they can only rebuild themselves if you have enough protein!
Our bodies can’t store protein which is why we need to incorporate it into our diets regularly. Protein has been shown to have many benefits to our overall well being, from stamina and brain function to physical performance and strength. Although protein is always better to incorporate into your diet through food, rather than shakes, the latter can be used as a supplement for a meal that may not otherwise contain protein, like a breakfast of cereal or fruit.
As both hair and nails are primarily made up of the structural protein, keratin, it makes sense that adequate protein intake will provide the building blocks for growing strong and healthy hair and nails. Protein is also an important component for every cell in the body, it not only helps build and repair tissues but also provides the bases for healthy bones, skin and cartilage. Overall, adding a sufficient amount of protein to a balanced diet will help you look and feel your absolute best.
It is no secret that protein keeps you feeling fuller for longer. This means that you will be less likely to snack throughout the day and is, therefore, essential to weight loss. Protein also takes more energy to consume than refined carbohydrates, which the body breaks down into sugar, therefor, it is a great way to keep your body feeling satiated and calorie count low.
Protein intake for a sedentary female is 46g per day, while active women require more. Take your weight in kilograms, then multiply that number by 0.8 (not very active), 1.3 (active or pregnant), or 1.8 (extremely active), depending on how much exercise you get.