Daily Health Tips
Plant protein makes life possible
Plant protein makes life possible. In 1838, a Dutch chemist, G. J. Mulder, described a certain organic material as "unquestionably the most important of all known substances in the organic kingdom. Without it, no life appears possible on our planet. Through its means the chief phenomena of life are produced." This complex nitrogen-bearing substance was called protein from the Greek word meaning " take the first place." Protein in now a group name signifying the principal nitrogenous constituents of the protoplasm of all plant and animal tissues. There are several varieties of protein. Each type contains a specific number of "building blocks " known as amino-acids. Before they can be absorbed by the body, all proteins must first be broken down into amino-acids. When food stuffs are ingested, the nutrients and amino-acids do not immediately diffuse into all the different tissues. There are a series of biochemical reactions in the digestive tract which collect these proteins, break them down and then utilise them as needed. Any interference with the normal digestive process causes in-complete protein digestion resulting in gas, bloating etc. There are about 22 amino acids needed for the normal functioning of the body. The body can manufacture many amino acids if it has no adequate nitrogen source, but it cannot produce certain others in sufficient amounts to meet its needs. The amino acids that the body cannot synthesis is in adequate amounts are called essential or indispensable because they must be supplied by the diet in proper proportions and amounts to meet the requirements for maintenance of growth. The body can synthesize in sufficient amounts to meet its needs if the total amount of nitrogen supplied by protein is adequate.