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Protein

  • Protein is essential for growth and repair of the body and maintenance of good health.
  • Protein also provides energy; 1 gram provides 17 kJ (4 kcal).
  • The Reference Nutrient Intake (RNI) is set at 0.75g of protein per kilogram body weight per day for adults.
  • The amount of protein we need changes during a lifetime.
  • Different foods contain different amounts and different combinations of amino acids (the building blocks of proteins). Protein from animal sources (e.g. meat, fish, eggs and dairy products) contains the full range of essential amino acids needed by the body. However, vegans and vegetarians can get all the amino acids they need by combining different plant sources of protein, e.g. pulses and cereals.

Importance of protein

Proteins are fundamental structural and functional elements within every cell of the body and are involved in a wide range of metabolic interactions. All cells and tissues contain protein, therefore protein is essential for growth and repair and the maintenance of good health. Protein provides the body with approximately 10 to 15% of its dietary energy and it is the second most abundant compound in the body, following water. A large proportion of this will be muscle (43% on average) with significant proportions being present in skin (15%) and blood (16%).

Amino acids

Proteins are large molecules made up of long chains of amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. The biochemical activity of proteins is characterised by their individual structure, size and shape. These factors are determined by the sequence and characteristics of the constituent amino acids.

There are about 20 different amino acids commonly found in plant and animal proteins. For adults, 8 of these, have to be provided in the diet and are therefore defined as ‘essential’ or ‘indispensable’ amino acids. These are:

Leucine
Isoleucine
Valine
Threonine
Methionine
Phenylalanine
Tryptophan
Lysine.

In children, arginine, histidine, cysteine, glycine, tyrosine, glutamine and proline are also considered to be essential (indispensable) amino acids, because children are unable to make enough to meet their needs. These are referred to as ‘conditionally’ essential. There may also be certain disease states during adult life when a particular amino acid becomes conditionally essential.

The other amino acids do not have to be provided by the diet. This is because the amino group of these amino acids can be transferred to another amino acid with a different amino group by a process called transamination. In this way the body is able to make some amino acids itself. These are known as ‘non-essential’ or ‘dispensable’ amino acids.

How much protein should we eat?

The Dietary Reference Values for protein are based on estimates of need. For adults, an average requirement of 0.6g of protein per kilogram bodyweight per day is estimated. The Reference Nutrient Intake (RNI) is set at 0.75g of protein per kilogram bodyweight per day in adults. This equates to approximately 56g/day and 45g/day for men and women aged 19-50 years respectively. There is an extra requirement for growth in infants and children and for pregnant and breast feeding women.

Any excess protein can be used to provide energy. 1g of protein provides 17kJ (4 kcal) but carbohydrate, and to a lesser extent fat, should be the main sources of dietary energy. At present, protein provides around 16% of energy on average in the British diet.

Current protein intakes

The average daily intake of protein in the UK is 88g for men and 64g for women, which is more than sufficient: it exceeds the Dietary Reference Values for protein. Foods vary in the amount of protein they provide but the main sources include meat, fish, eggs, milk, cheese, cereals and cereal products (e.g. bread), nuts and pulses (beans and lentils). The most common sources of protein in the British diet are shown in figure 1.

 

The nature of protein in the diet

Most foods contain either animal or plant cells and will therefore naturally contain protein. But the processing of foods may change the amounts and relative proportions of some amino acids; for example the Maillard reaction and the associated browning that occurs when foods are baked reduces the available lysine. The quality of the protein is also important and depends on the amino acids that are present. Proteins from animal sources have a higher biological value than proteins from plant sources. This is because the pattern of amino acids in animal cells is comparable to the pattern in human cells. Plant foods may have very different patterns of amino acids compared to animal proteins, and, in the past, this difference has lead to a concept of first-class and second-class proteins, for animal and plant foods respectively. However, diets are typically varied in the UK and rarely made up of single foods. A combination of plant proteins tends to have a complementary effect boosting their overall biological value.

Complementary action of proteins (plant protein)

In most diets, different proteins tend to complement each other in their amino acid pattern, so when two foods providing vegetable protein are eaten at a meal, such as a cereal (e.g. bread) and pulses (e.g. baked beans), the amino acids of one protein may compensate for the limitations of the other, resulting in a combination of higher biological value. This is known as the complementary action of proteins. Thus if vegetarians and vegans eat a variety of vegetable proteins in combination, there is no reason why the quality of protein cannot be as good as in a diet comprising meat, milk, fish, eggs or other foods that contain animal protein. Good sources of plant protein include nuts, seeds, pulses, mycoprotein and soya products. There are also small amounts in grains.

In the UK, most people’s diets contain plenty of protein and provide more than enough of the indispensable amino acids. However, in some countries where protein intakes are low, the complementary action of proteins plays an important role in helping individuals meet their nutritional requirements. For example, the tradition of combining lentils with rice in cuisines from the Indian sub continent.

Animal protein

Protein from animal sources contains the full range of essential amino acids required from an adult’s diet. Sources include meat, fish, eggs, milk and cheese. For most of us, low fat options of these foods are preferable as some can be high in saturated fat.

Good sources of protein

Table 1: Protein content of some common foods found in the diet

Food type Protein content (g) per 100g

Meat protein

Meat Chicken breast (grilled without skin)
Beef steak (lean grilled)
Lamb chop (lean grilled)
Pork chop (lean grilled)
32.0
31.0
29.2
31.6
Fish Tuna (canned in brine)
Mackerel (grilled)
Salmon (grilled)
Cod (grilled)
23.5
20.8
24.2
20.8
Seafood Prawns
Mussels
Crabsticks
22.6
16.7
10.0
Eggs Chicken eggs 12.5
Dairy Whole milk
Semi-skimmed milk
Skimmed milk
Cheddar cheese
Half-fat cheddar
Cottage cheese
Whole milk yogurt
Low fat yogurt (plain)
3.3
3.4
3.4
25.4
32.7
12.6
5.7
4.8

Plant protein

Pulses Red lentils
Chickpeas
7.6
8.4
Beans Kidney beans
Baked beans
Tofu (soya bean steamed)
6.9
5.2
8.1
Grains Wheat flour (brown)
Bread (brown)
Bread (white)
Rice (easy cook boiled)
Oatmeal
Pasta (fresh cooked)
12.6
7.9
7.9
2.6
11.2
6.6
Nuts Almonds
Walnuts
Hazelnuts
21.1
14.7
14.1

Adults and children should consume two to three servings of protein every day. If plant sources dominate, it is important to make sure that different types are consumed.

One typical portion size equates to:

•100gofleanbonelessmeat(redandpoultry)
•140goffish
•2mediumeggs
• 3 tablespoons of seeds or nuts.

It is important to choose lower fat protein-rich foods, such as lean meats or reduced fat dairy products as some high protein foods can also be high in saturated fat. This will help minimise the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

 

Protein and weight management

Protein-rich foods tend to make people feel fuller than foods rich in carbohydrates or fat. So including a lean source of protein with a meal can help to minimise feelings of hunger and decrease overall energy intake.

Some studies have shown protein-rich diets with a low carbohydrate content to be associated with slightly greater initial weight loss compared with widely recommended low fat eating programmes. However, no differences have generally been reported when comparisons have been made over a longer duration (e.g. after 12 months). Long-term studies are needed to compare the effects of protein-rich, low carbohydrate diets versus low fat diets on nutritional status and body composition and to assess their effects on disease risk and nutritional status.

Some popular high protein, low carbohydrate diets claim to be effective at producing weight loss despite a high fat intake from fatty meats and full fat dairy products. Such a diet remains contradictory to current healthy eating messages. Regardless of the composition of the diet, weight loss will only occur if a deficit in energy intake compared to output through activity is created to achieve a negative energy balance. There are also safety concerns about very-high-protein diets that involved cutting out other food groups and caution should therefore be exercised in promoting them.

When reducing energy intake in order to lose weight, it will be necessary to reduce intake of some foods but it is a good idea to maintain intake of low-fat, protein rich foods. In the context of a lower energy intake, this will result in a relatively high proportion of energy coming from protein in the diet, but will not represent an increase in the absolute amount of protein consumed or require the other food groups to be cut out of the diet.

 

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Causes, Symptoms and Treatment For Lethal Disease – Brain Tumor

The abnormal and unusual growth of the cells or the tissues within the brain is known as brain tumor. Brain tumors are basically of two types. They are malignant tumors which are also known as cancerous and the other type is non-malignant or non-cancerous or benign tumors. Brain tumors are caused because of the uncontrolled cell division because of the improper functioning of the brain. The cells which are unable to be controlled in this disease are neurons, glial cells, astrocytes, ependymal cells, myelin-producing Schwann cells, lymphatic tissue, blood vessels etc.

Among the children, the true or primary brain tumors are usually located in the posterior cranial fossa. Among the adults, these would generally appear in the anterior two-thirds of the cerebral hemispheres. Brain tumors can affect any part of the brain in adults irrespective of the location they are in.

SYMPTOMS:

Depending on the characteristics of the tumor, there are two types of brain tumors:

  • Brain tumor depending on the tumor size or volume.
  • Brain tumor depending on the location of the tumor.

Whether a brain tumor is a benign or a malignant one depends on the time point of the symptom on set. Hence whether a tumor is lethal or non-lethal can be identified as follows:

  • Benign tumor if the symptoms grow at a very slow rate and they show very late.
  • Malignant tumor if the symptoms grow at a very fast rate and they show very early.

Persons who are experiencing the second type of symptoms should consult a doctor immediately as they observe them. They can be very harmful and unable to be treated if the patients do not seek instant medical attention.

TYPES OF TUMORS:

  • Large tumors in the brain can lead to high intracranial pressure which is nothing but a form of hypertension inside the brain. This would be translated into continuous and severe headaches, vomiting, unconsciousness etc.
  • Even small tumors which obstruct the passage of cerebrospinal fluid may cause similar tumors as that of a large tumor. Especially in children, the high brain pressure may lead to an unusual increase in the diameter of the skull.

SYMPTOMS DUE TO DIFFERENT TUMOR LOCATIONS:

 

Different tumor locations may lead to different types of symptoms. Some of the basic symptoms are

  • Cognitive and behavioral impairment
  • Personality changes
  • Hemiparesis
  • Hypoesthesia
  • Aphasia
  • Ataxia
  • Visual field impairment
  • Facial paralysis
  • Double vision
  • Tremor etc.

Though these are not the symptoms of only brain tumor, it is advised to consult a physician and get the doubts cleared up.

TREATMENT:

Brain tumors, as explained above, could be lethal or non-lethal. Whatever the kind it might be, it’s always better to have the person checked up who has been experiencing the symptoms stated before. Homeopathy has proved an efficient and effective treatment for recuperation from this disease. But patients should follow the instructions and prescriptions of the Homeopathy doctor right from the start of the first consultation for successful and treatment.

 

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Relief from Migraines – severe headaches

One of the most painful or unbearable problem for humans is caused in the form of Migraines. These are the form of vascular headaches. Migraines are caused when the blood vessels present in the brain undergo an unexpected and severe enlargement. This phenomenon is also known as vasodilatation of the blood vessels. This will lead to the release of harmful chemicals from the surrounding nerve fibers which would coil around the large arteries of the brain. These chemicals are dangerous because they cause inflammation, pain and further enlargement of the arteries which in turn magnifies the pain.

Migraines may usually attack the person’s forehead, around the eye or at the back of the head. The basic symptoms include intense, throbbing or pounding pain across the temple. Though these pains are unilateral i.e. attack only one side of the head, people would experience pain on both sides for some small period of time too.

The primitive responses to stress and pain which are most commonly known as “fight” or “flight” responses are controlled by the sympathetic nervous system. This part of the nervous system is the most vulnerable and the commonly attacked part by the Migraines. Along with the usual severe headaches, this attack would also bring in many more affects to the body including the attack on intestine. This may lead to nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Digestion will also become a problem. The undigested food will block the medication to be absorbed properly by the body in severe cases which disables the cure through medicines for a considerable extent.

The other symptoms which are caused by this increase in the sympathetic activity include the decrease in the circulation of blood across all the organs of the body. Paling of the skin, cold hands and feet are the primary symptoms due to this reason. Sometimes, people may also be affected with the sensitivity to light as well as sound. This may lead to blurred vision as well as hearing impairment to some extent.

An international survey tells us that approximately 28 million of Americans suffer from these Migraines. There is more number of females than males that are affected with this problem. Nearly 17% of the females and 6% of the males are attacked by this problem.  It is also a known fact that only less than half of the individuals suffering from Migraines are diagnosed by their doctors. It should be treated with more care and intensity.

An estimated 40%-60% of migraine attacks are preceded by premonitory (warning) symptoms lasting hours to days. The symptoms may include:

The following are some of the premonitory or warning symptoms which may stretch from hours to days before the occurrence of a migraine.

  • Sleepiness
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Depression or euphoria,
  • Yawning and
  • Cravings for sweet or salty foods.

Some migraine attacks initially would not be obvious. Patients may not experience a severe headache at first. Hence, one should take care when the above mentioned symptoms appear.

Homeopathy is the best form of alternative medicine to treat the Migraines problem ly and effectively. It can successfully find the root of the problem and starts healing from that point.

 

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Anemia treatment in homeopathy

Get rid of low red blood cells problem – Anemia

INTRODUCTION:

The condition where there will be a significant decrease in the quantity of red blood cells, also known as erythrocytes, which results in the decrease of the amount of hemoglobin in the blood is known as Anemia. Hemoglobin is a crucial element of the blood which is a pigment in red color present in the erythrocytes used for transporting oxygen.

There are various types of Anemia depending on the intensity, but there are only three commonly known and affected Anemia problems. They are:

  • Iron deficiency anemia
  • Vitamin B12 anemia
  • Folic acid deficiency anemia

CONDITIONS THAT CAUSE ANEMIA:

Anemia can be caused by a number of different conditions. The most common of those conditions are external bleeding, chronic diseases, pregnancy, alcoholism, bleeding disorders, infection, and hereditary conditions.

SYMPTOMS:

The following are the basic and most known symptoms of iron-deficiency anemia.

  • Paleness, weakness or tiredness
  • Chest pains in some intense cases
  • Shortness of breath
  • Heart palpitations
  • An increased heart rate especially during exertion
  • Rapid breathing
  • Low blood pressure

The following are the symptoms observed when a person is suffering from Vitamin B-12 anemia

  • Jaundice
  • Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet
  • Equilibrium difficulties
  • Confusion
  • Personality changes and depression

 

WAYS TO OVERCOME ANEMIA:

Anemia can be triumphed when a person intakes the diet which is very rich in iron along with the prescribed homeopathic medicine. Homeopathic doctors usually prescribe the medicine which is included with Ferrum Phosphoricum and Ferrum Metallicum. It should be noticed that the diet or medication for each and every person who suffers from this condition will be unique and different. The prescription will be based on their resistance power, body type, mental and physical condition. It is always advised to follow the suggestion of the Homeopathy doctor for the appropriate dosage and intake of medicine and food respectively.

Anemia can be treated by introducing the artificially created and isolated iron supplement which may temporarily solve the problem by increasing the level of iron in the blood which also makes the person temporarily better.

HOMEOPATHIC TREATMENT:

But it’s difficult for a person to continuously intake this artificial iron supplement and as the time goes by, he or she may require more and more amounts of it. Hence it is advised to follow a natural treatment which will be treatment. This will bring a person back to his or natural balance. Homeopathy is the best way to restore balance in the amount of iron and hence the hemoglobin in your body. This works by stimulating the immune system and solving the problem from the roots.

 

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Awareness on kidney stones problem

Do you know that scientists have found evidence of kidney stones in an Egyptian mummy which was aged around 7000 years of age? This proves that kidney stones issue is one of the oldest and most common issues among humans. It is also one of the most painful of the urologic disorders experienced by human beings. It is so common that almost 3 million visits to the doctors and specialists are recorded every year seeking treatment for this disease and more than half million people would go to emergency rooms for kidney stone problems.

There are also the types of kidney stones that pass out of the body through urine without any intervention by a doctor. These are basically harmless and more common among humans. But there are some types of stones that are too large to be passed out through urine and hence they require a treatment which includes various techniques. These techniques may or may not include any major surgery but most of them don’t require it. Recent studies and advancements in researches have made it possible for an easy treatment of this problem without major operations.

Kidney stones are nothing but hard masses of crystals that separate from the urine within the urinary tract of the kidney. These are formed when the urine stops producing the chemicals that prevent the crystals from forming. The intensity of the kidney stones problem depends on the size of them, whether they are small enough that they can pass out through urine or not.

Some less common types of kidney stones are caused by the infection in the urinary tract. These stones are usually called as struvite or infection stone. Uric acid stones are less common and cysteine stones are rare.

The symptoms in a person having kidney stones are not immediately apparent or visible. The most general symptom in many cases of kidney stones is the extreme pain which will be experienced, when stone moves in the path of the urine flow and blocks it. Person may feel in the back and side area of the kidney or in the lower abdomen which may also lead to nausea and vomiting.

In case of the larger kidney stones, there will be an immense pain experienced by the person as the muscles in the wall of the ureter would try to squeeze the stone into the bladder. This may generate urine with blood making it look like a pink fluid and the person may also feel the need to urinate more frequently along with the burning sensation during urination.

An infection of the kidney stone can be identified when the person suffers from fever and chills along with the symptoms mentioned above. It is advised for the person to contact a doctor immediately when he or she faces such a situation

This is a very common problem among people and most would definitely experience this at some age or the other. Homeopathy is the best alternative method of treatment for kidney stones and it helps the problem to be cured ly.

 

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