Miessence Protein Powder
The link between protein, environment & health:
How to be vegetarian, save the world AND be healthy!
Does one small daily act like choosing vegetable parmigiana over beef fillet at dinner have the potential to change the world? Surprisingly, yes.
Approximately two-thirds of the world’s population are estimated to live on a primarily plant-based diet. However rising incomes and urbanisation are driving a worldwide dietary transition in which traditional diets are replaced by diets higher in meats and dairy1, a global shift towards eating more meat. It has been suggested that by 2050, these dietary trends – if unchecked – would be a major contributor to an estimated 80 per cent increase in global agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from food production and global land clearing2. Plant-based diets use fewer natural resources and are less taxing on the environment than diets rich in animal products3. So do we really need to eat so much meat?
Why do we need protein?
Protein is a vital macronutrient – essential for the sustenance of life, and next to water, makes up the largest portion of our body weight. Proteins are broken down in the stomach during digestion into amino acids, including the essential amino acids that cannot be biosynthesised by the body itself. Amino acids are the building blocks of our bones, muscles and tissue. The liver manufactures about 80% of these amino acids, but the remaining 20% of such amino acids must be supplied directly by diet, and these amino acids are referred to as the essential amino acids. It is important to note that, unlike fat and carbohydrates that can be stored in the body and utilised as required, protein cannot be stored; so it is vital to consume the appropriate amount of protein on a daily basis.
How much do we need?
The amount of protein you need in your diet depends on your gender, weight, age and health. The recommended requirement is between 800mg/kg – 1800mg/kg depending on activity levels (intense resistance and endurance athletes need 1300-1800mg/kg). As a rough guide, the recommended dietary intake (RDI) for protein (measured in grams per kilogram of bodyweight) is 0.8g/kg. So, a 70kg person needs 56g of protein (0.8 x 70) per day. The human body can’t store protein and will excrete any excess. Therefore, the most effective way of using the daily protein requirement is to eat small amounts at every meal. Using the example of the 70 kg person above, this would require that they eat approximately 18g of protein at three meals each day. The consequences of inadequate protein intake includes muscle loss, decreased metabolic rate, decreased immunity, impaired wound healing, and loss of skin elasticity.
Can a vegetarian diet provide what we need?
Amino acids are found in animal sources such as meats, milk, fish and eggs, as well as in plant sources such as grains, legumes, fruits, nuts and seeds. Vegetarians and vegans can get enough essential amino acids by eating a variety of plant proteins. Choosing a diet rich in selected plant proteins eliminates the risks of saturated fats found in animal protein, allergic reactions and lactose intolerance due to whey protein and digestive difficulty with soy protein. However when choosing a vegetarian diet, it is important to remember that the best sources of protein include a complete amino acid profile. This is important because our bodies use amino acids in a specific ratio to each other. If we don’t get enough of one of them to match the others, they can only be utilised at the level of the lowest (limiting) one. These are called limiting amino acids, and if our diet is deficient in one of them, this will limit the usefulness of the others, even if they are eaten in large quantities. So, the net protein utilization of eating only one protein source (rice, for instance) is affected by the limiting amino acid content of that source.
What makes our protein unique?
Plant protein sources are generally incomplete sources of protein, because one or more of the essential amino acids is deficient. However, even though none of the individual ingredients in our protein powder is a complete protein, by carefully combining them in a specific ratio, we have been able to make up for the deficiencies of each ingredient and create a plant-sourced protein powder that has a complete amino acid profile from complementary sources of grain, legume and seed, making up for the deficiencies of the limiting amino acid from each source.
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