What is the essential dietary substance that helps you to get up in the morning and also helps you to go on for the day? Its protein! The importance of protein is learned by us in school. We know that protein in food is broken down into 20 amino acids and these amino acids are the body’s building blocks for the growth and energy. Also they help in maintaining cells, tissues and organs. Lack of protein leads to slow growth, reduction in mass muscle, lower immunity system, and the weakening of the heart and the other respiratory systems. That’s the reason your mum was nagging you to have the boiled pulses and hard-shell nuts.
Daily try different types of protein intake. One day start with beans like black beans, navy beans, garbanzo and lentils. A daily intake of some nuts like almonds, walnuts, pistachios and pecans is great. The advantage of this is that you don’t have to specially prepare a nice recipe. Simply, you have to throw some nuts in your mouth while running out to work or in free time at office. But see to it that you don’t eat refined nuts, or the sugary or salty ones. One could also try some soy products like tofu, soy milk and veggie burgers for a change. This will open up new options for healthy mealtimes. Remember that like protein other vitamins and other dietary substances are also necessary. So limit your protein intake. Consume it in required portions.
Just like protein, calcium is a key nutrient. We need calcium for staying strong and healthy. Like protein is a building block for growth and energy, calcium is a building block for strong bones. A certain amount of magnesium and vitamin D and vitamin K are also required for helping calcium to do its job. Studies say that 1000 mg of calcium is required per day whereas among the elderly crowd, that is, 50 above, they need calcium of 1200 mg per day.
Dairy products like milk, cheese and yogurt are rich source of calcium. These food products are also easily digested and absorbed in the body. Never forget that green leafy vegetables are not only a rich source of calcium but also of iron. Try mustard greens, broccoli, cabbage, squash, green beans, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, spinach and celery. Even kidney beans, black beans, white beans, black eyed beans are rich source of calcium.
So the next time when you go to the mall to shop, see to it that your cart is full with proteins, calcium, carbohydrates and the healthy fats. Happy eating!