Protein deficiency in the body: symptoms and methods of replenishment
Proteins are the main material that our body consists of. Lack of proteins leads to serious consequences, up to disruption of all organs and systems.
What is protein and why does the body need it
Protein is an organic substance made up of amino acids that are linked together by a chain. In living organisms, there are 20 amino acids in total, but thanks to various combinations, they form the whole variety of proteins.
Proteins are formed from amino acids, which can be interchangeable, synthesized in the body, and indispensable in the body through food.
Proteins perform many functions in the body.
They form all the tissues of our body, that is, they perform a building function. Moreover, it must be understood that body cells are constantly updated, and proteins are necessary for this process.
Proteins are involved in metabolic processes, as a result of which the body receives energy.
Proteins supply body cells with oxygen and nutrients.
Cells of the immune system are formed from proteins: macrophages and white blood cells, which protect the body from external infections.
So the enzymes and hormones necessary for regulating the functioning of the body are also proteins.
Proteins are both DNA and RBC molecules that transmit gene information.
Proteins are involved in the transmission of a nerve impulse, which contributes to the functioning of the nervous system.
It is clear that without proteins the existence of a living organism is impossible.
Causes of Protein Lack
Protein deficiency, or protein deficiency, can be primary and secondary.
Primary protein deficiency is associated with insufficient intake of food. This is possible due to poor nutrition, strict diets, vegetarianism.
Secondary protein deficiency occurs with digestive disorders due to diseases of the digestive tract, as well as with neuro-endocrine pathologies.
Another reason for the lack of protein is the breakdown of tissues as a result of severe injuries, burns, and serious diseases.
How is a lack of protein
At the very beginning, the symptoms of protein deficiency can be almost invisible and can be expressed in slight weight loss. Then other symptoms appear.
The skin becomes dry, pale and cold. It can peel off, a rash appears on it.
Lack of protein affects nails and hair. Nails constantly break, become uneven. Dandruff forms on the hair, it dries up and splits, then it begins to fall out.
There is weakness, fatigue, reduced performance.
Muscles become flabby, skin sagging.
Digestion is broken, a person is suffering from diarrhea.
Sex drive is reduced. In women, menstruation may stop.
Character changes: a person becomes irritable, touchy, aggressive or, conversely, lethargic.
Immunity is weakened, which causes frequent infectious diseases.
Damages and wounds heal very poorly and easily become infected. In older people, the risk of fractures and trophic ulcers increases.
The cardiovascular system suffers, which is manifested by pain, arrhythmia, shortness of breath. The capacity of the lungs decreases, affecting the intensity of respiration.
With severe protein deficiency, edema can develop.
What to do
When symptoms of protein deficiency appear, you should consult a doctor to find out the presence of a pathology and determine its cause. Diagnose protein deficiency by blood and urine tests.
If protein deficiency is caused by diseases or disorders, then you need to start with their treatment.
In the case of alimentary (food) protein deficiency, you should review and adjust your diet to include foods high in protein: meat, fish, poultry, eggs, dairy products. Of the products of non-animal origin, proteins are found in nuts and legumes.
The doctor may prescribe and preparations containing whey proteins, vitamin complexes.
In severe cases of protein deficiency, you may need to be treated in a hospital.