What happens when you don’t eat enough protein?
These are the signs to watch out for
May 11, 2018
In a country where ulam and rice is life, there’s really no shortage of protein in the typical Filipino diet. However, it’s important to remember that each body is idiosyncratic and, therefore, requires different amounts of nutrients to function optimally. Just because your meals have the same carb-protein-fat ratio as your sibling’s, doesn’t mean your bodies are absorbing the same amount of nutrients. Specifically, the amount of protein your body needs depends on a variety of factors such as weight, muscle mass, age, and physical activity.
Among the three macronutrients, protein is integral in a number of bodily functions and maintaining overall health. Which means that if you’re not consuming as much protein as your body needs, it will definitely become apparent in one way or another. Here are the low protein intake signs to be weary of.
Hair is made up of a structural protein called keratin. If your body isn’t getting enough of it, then it may cause your hair to prematurely fall off. If you’ve been seeing more hair clog the drain recently, low protein levels may be the culprit.
Brittle nails and flaky skin
Proteins are the body’s building blocks. Like hair, nails are also made of keratin, so brittle nails that break easily are a sign of low protein intake. Severe protein deficiency may also affect the skin. If you notice redness or flakiness, take that as your queue to increase protein consumption.
When the body doesn’t get enough protein through your diet, then it resorts to breaking down your muscles, which can result in decreased energy, muscle weakness, and pain.
When you don’t consume enough protein, the body responds by stimulating your appetite in order to find protein, encouraging you to eat. This may be why diets low in protein can cause weight gain rather than weight loss.
Getting sick frequently
Because protein deficiency can compromise the immune system, it increases the likelihood of infections, and can cause you to get sick more easily and frequently.
Images courtesy of Unsplash.
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