Along with carbohydrates and fat, your body needs protein, a nutrient made up of essential and nonessential amino acids,for good health.Proteins are often called the building blocks of the body. Protein should account for 10% to 20% of the calories consumed each day. Protein is essential to the structure of red blood cells, for the proper functioning of antibodies resisting infection, for the regulation of enzymes and hormones, for growth, and for the repair of body tissue. Protein consists of combinations of structures called amino acids that combine in various ways to make muscles, bone, tendons, skin, hair, and other tissues. In fact, over 10,000 different proteins are in the body.
How does your body use protein from food? Protein helps to maintain and replace the tissues in your body, and it is found in almost every living cell and fluid. Your muscles, organs and many of your hormones are made up of protein,and it is also used in the manufacture of hemoglobin, the red blood cells that carry oxygen in our body. Protein is also used to manufacture antibodies that fight infection and disease and is integral to our body’s blood clotting ability. Both children and adults need plenty of protein to grow and develop.