Medical Articles

Difference Between Plant and Animal Protein

You will be hard pressed to find an item that plays as important a role in our very being than protein. Found in every single part of the body, used as the lubricant for any chemical reaction that occurs within the body (be it metabolism, respiration or whatever), protein really is the currency of the body.

However, people are exposing themselves to a degree of unnecessary and totally unavoidable risk primarily because they are basing and making decisions with the assistance of limited, erroneous, partial and sometimes inaccurate information. For example, to the average person, there is no distinction at all when it comes to the various different types of protein, after all, protein is protein, right?

To paraphrase George Orwell in his classic novel, Animal Farm:

"All protein is equal....but some protein is more equal than others."

In other words, whilst protein of any description can and does provide us with considerable health benefits and is integral to the wellbeing of the human, the truth of the matter is that there are certain types of protein which are much more productive, much more reliable, and much healthier.

At the risk of grossly oversimplifying the process, protein can be broadly divided into two categories, plant and animal based protein.

Medical professionals across the world all agree: it is crucial that the bulk of the protein that a person ingests is derived from plant sources rather than the animal sources. The reason for this is due to the fact that animal based proteins tend to have a much higher content of saturated fat (also known as Trans fats).

To put this issue into perspective, these saturated fats will pose a series of risks to the health and wellbeing of the person such as an increased risk of stroke, heart disease, liver failure, diabetes and hypertension.

As if this was not alarming enough, there is a wealth of information and scientific studies that have proven a clear, direct and causal relationship between a diet that has a high content of red meat in it, and the onset of bowel and stomach cancer.

Therefore, whilst the animal proteins do provide us with the protein we need, they also happen to come with "strings" attached, and these strings can directly pose a severe threat to our life. Plant protein on the other hand provides the person with the best of both worlds in that they have a negligible amount of fat, whilst being rich in protein and nutrients.

Another crucial difference between the animal and plant proteins is due to the fact that whilst there is a lot of evidence to suggest that excessive read meat consumption can cause cancer, plant proteins actually reduce the risk of cancer. A primary example of this is to be found in soya beans which have a very high presence of antioxidant agents which many scientists believe play a crucial role in the inhibition of cancer.

Hopefully the above information has given you plenty to think about.

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