Eating good sources of protein is one of the three essential macronutrients and building blocks that support cellular regeneration. Protein, carbohydrates and fats are all required by the body, for cellular growth, development, and repair, immunity,and for synapse connections which are key cell signaling.
Protein is also needed for maintaining hormone health
Protein contains an essential amino acid named tryptophan, which our body uses to make serotonin.
Tryptophan helps increase serotonin levels and is naturally found in well sourced chicken, turkey, walnuts, pork, beef, crab, kidney beans, black beans, spinach, halibut, some cheeses, milk and bananas. The most important benefit from more serotonin include: healthier and better quality sleep, and better moods, essential for every one during a stressful period.
Sources of Trytophan can be from plant derived food – meat is not the only source. Milk, tuna, oats, cheese, peanuts, chocolate, banana’s – are good sources
Low serotonin levels have a strong correlation with an impaired cognitive performance – such as brain fog, Anxiety, mood swings and there are also links to depression .
Why Does Protein Needs Change With Age
Those aged 65 plus or in menopause is when typically hormones shift. Body composition changes
There is a natural decline in muscle mass and function, known as sarcopenia, resulting from decreased activity levels, poor nutrition, chronic disease states, and neurological decline.
Older women, the decline in estrogen levels plummet, which result in muscle and bone mass, can contribute to sarcopenia.
A recent study evidenced that consistent protein intake through middle and later life, and for older women, can help in the maintenance of muscle mass and tone particularly if taking part in regular physical activity. The suggested amount is higher than you might think at 92 grams per day. This study suggested it had a 30 percent lower long term health risks.
For an average adults the ratio is set at .8 Grams per kilogram of body weight – The more active a person is it can be increased to 1-1.2grams per kilogram or 54-68 grams of protein per day for an average women who is 150 pounds or 10.7 stones.
Protein does not need need to be derived from meat. It can also be found in other foods such as lentils.
If this post inspires you to change your diet again or try a plant based approach – get in touch to discuss this further