We eat and drink foods to nourish and sustain our body through a complex process of digestion and absorption. Food provides us with energy to fuel our body and nutrients to help us grow and heal.
The amount of body fuel a food provides us is measured in calories (or kilojoules*). The more calories a food contains, the more body fuel it provides to our body. The total calorie content of food is determined by the amount of Carbohydrates, Fats and Proteins the food contains – these are Macronutrients.
What is Protein?
Proteins occur in all living cells and are comprised of small units called amino acids. There are 20 amino acids that can be assembled in different sequences and lengths to make different proteins. The body breaks down proteins during digestion to release the amino acids which are then used as building blocks for body tissues and vital body substances such as enzymes and hormones.
Eating sufficient protein and a variety of protein is important to ensure your body gets enough amino acids required to produce vital body proteins.
Good sources of protein include lean meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, eggs, beans and legumes.
1 gram of protein = 4 calories