7 Myths about eating protein

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It’s high time to bust the biggest protein myths and put these old-age rumors to rest. Read ahead to know more!

Protein acts as the building blocks for your body. It’s great for building muscle mass and aids muscle recovery and maintenance. But there are multiple myths associated with the same. We have listed down seven myths about eating protein.

Myth 1: A high protein diet negatively impacts kidney function

Fact: Unless you acquire pre-existing chronic kidney disease or impaired kidney function, a high-protein diet does not affect your kidneys. Kidneys filter out waste and residue, and quite contrary to the myth, a protein diet gets the kidneys to a hyper-filtration. For instance, people who donate a kidney do not result in the other kidney being overtaxed for having to deal with double the amount of protein. They are completely fine and healthy.

Some research also shows that consuming excess protein might weaken bones as your urine may contain increased calcium. This is not proven yet. We should always consult a doctor before doing so.

Myth 2: All proteins are the same

Fact: This is probably the biggest myth out there. All protein sources are different and provide a different amount of protein. Also, animal protein sources vary from plant protein sources. The debate seems never-ending, and if you are a vegetarian and only consume plant protein sources, then you might want to consider including protein supplements in your diet. However, health and fitness experts believe that while animal protein sources like egg, fish, chicken, etc., are complete protein sources, plant protein sources lack certain amino acids essential for the body.


Myth 3: Everyone should take a protein supplement

Fact: This is a myth. Not all of us need to chug down protein shakes. It all depends on your fitness goals, and while most people get enough protein through their daily diet with protein-rich food, you don’t necessarily need to include bodybuilding supplements or protein shakes. Having a bowl of Greek yogurt or chicken salad with veggies and sprouts will suffice.

If you are someone who doesn’t include protein sources in your diet, like eggs, chicken, lentils, etc., then you can take protein supplements. Also, for people who are always on the go and have a quick boost of protein, protein shakes are a great choice. Make sure to consult your dietician or doctor before adding your supplements and planning out the ratio of intake.

Myth 4: Cutting down protein is a great way to lose weight

Fact: A lot of people who want to lose weight think that cutting down protein intake will help in weight loss. On the contrary, insufficient protein in your diet can make it difficult to get rid of excess fat. Protein is one of the most important nutrients of all, and it fills you. It helps you feel satiated and boosts your metabolism as well. Both of these qualities are great when you want to lose weight. The feeling of being fuller for longer will keep you away from cravings and hunger pangs. A heightened metabolism will add to your workout routine and show positive results.

When you don’t eat enough protein, your body might slowly show signs of fatigue, weakness, suppressed immune system, and swelling legs.


Myth 5: You need to consume protein right after a workout

Fact: Many people choose to consume protein 15-30 minutes after their workout to restore muscle tissue and boost performance. Most people consume protein shakes almost immediately after a workout, but the truth is that the muscle remains responsive to protein ingestion for as long as 24 hours post-workout, or perhaps even longer. As long as we consume our daily protein intake, we can build muscle, irrespective of the time.

Myth 6: Protein powder can substitute complete protein sources

Fact: Protein powder can substitute protein sources completely, which is a myth. It’s just an easy and convenient way to include extra protein in your diet. Also, since it is in powder form, the protein is absorbed rather quickly by the body.

While protein powders have multiple benefits, they should not be considered as a replacement for protein sources. Make sure to include animal and plant protein in your diet. Protein from different sources provides your body with macronutrients and essential amino acids.


Myth 7: Vegans need complete protein

Fact: A complete protein is a protein source that contains all nine essential amino acids. Some rich sources of protein are red meat, fish, poultry, eggs, milk, cheese, yogurt, quinoa, and soybeans. Vegans do not include any form of dairy or animal derivatives in their diet. Thus, for them, most of these sources are of no use, and hence, you can substitute these with plant-based proteins. Plant-based protein sources have enough incomplete protein. You can combine various sources to ensure the best results. Consult a dietician to make your meal plan.