Protein is one of the most vital nutrients. Protein is the primary component of muscles, skin, enzymes, and hormones, and it is found in all body tissues. Protein is found in almost all foods. As a result, in wealthy countries, true protein deficiency is uncommon. Some people, though, may still be at risk.
Low protein intake is also a concern, as it can cause subtle changes in your body over time. Deficiency leads to a variety of health concerns, while low protein intake can cause subtle changes in your body.
What is Protein Deficiency (Lack of Protein)
When your protein consumption is insufficient to meet your body's needs, this is known as protein insufficiency. Kwashiorkor is the most severe form of protein malnutrition. It is more common in youngsters in impoverished nations, where starvation and unbalanced meals are common occurrences.
Protein shortage has the potential to impair nearly every area of physiological function. As a result, it's linked to a variety of symptoms. Even if protein deficit is minor, some of these symptoms may appear. They are listed here, along with other common kwashiorkor symptoms.
1. Skin, hair, and nails disorders.
Protein insufficiency frequently affects the skin, hair, and nails, which are mostly composed of protein. Flaky or cracking skin, redness, and areas of depigmented skin, for example, are all signs of kwashiorkor in youngsters.
Hair thinning, fading hair color, alopecia (hair loss), and brittle nails are all typical signs. However, unless you have a significant protein deficiency, these symptoms are unlikely to emerge.
2. Higher Risk Bone Fracture.
Low protein consumption affects more than just muscles. Your bones are also in jeopardy. Protein deficiency can weaken your bones and raise your risk of fractures.
A higher protein intake was linked to a lower incidence of hip fractures in postmenopausal women, according to one study. Animal-source protein proved to provide the greatest advantages, with the highest intake associated to a 69 percent lower risk.
Another study found that consuming 20 grams of protein supplements per day for half a year delayed bone loss by 2.3 percent in postmenopausal women with recent hip fractures.
3. Increased Infection Severity.
The immune system can also be weakened by a protein deficiency. Impaired immune function, a common sign of acute protein insufficiency, might increase the risk or severity of infections.
For example, a study in mice found that eating a diet with only 2% protein was linked to a more severe influenza infection than eating a diet with 18% protein. Even protein deficiency can compromise immunological function.
4. Inflammation or Swelling.
Swelling (also known as edema) in the abdomen, legs, feet, and hands is one of the most prevalent indicators that you're not receiving enough protein. A probable explanation is that the proteins in your blood, particularly albumin, assist keep fluid from accumulating in your tissues. However, edema can be caused by a variety of factors, so consult your doctor if you think it's something more serious.
Credit Write-up: Healthline
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