How Your Body Tells You If You Have a Protein Deficiency

It is well known that protein plays a vital role in the functioning of our bodies. And if you have a deficiency of protein, your body will suffer. Here are some signs your body might give you when you lack protein:

1. Hair loss

Our hair is made up of 90% protein known as keratin. If you don’t get enough nutrients, your hair may thin and fade in color. This happens because the body stops using protein for non-essential things like hair growth in an effort to preserve it.

2. Food cravings

If you always feel hungry and have cravings for food,snacks and junk food, it may be because of a low protein, high-carb and sugar diet. The problem could be that you have unlimited access to high-calorie food in which the amount of protein is low in comparison to its calorie count.

3. Skin and nail problems

A protein deficiency can result in making your nails weak, brittle and in few cases, you will see white bands and brownish spots on the nails.

Protein deficiency can affect the skin as well, as protein enables cell regeneration, produces new cells, and replaces dead ones. If this happens, you will notice your skin feeling dry, flaky and cracked.


4. Fatty Liver

Fatty liver is one of the most common symptoms of a protein deficiency and if left untreated, can cause fatty liver disease, causing inflammation, liver scarring, and potential liver failure. This is a common condition in those who consume a lot of alcohol, obese people, and even kids.

5. Poor memory and lack of motivation

It is very important to get a proper intake of protein to support healthy brain function. If you experience lack of motivation, poor memory or trouble with learning anything new, it’s a sign that you are protein deficient. A study says that dopamine, epinephrine, and serotonin are neurotransmitters that your body needs in order to focus.

According to the USDA, the recommended minimum daily intake of protein for adults is 56 g per day for men, 46 g per day for women — and for kids, it varies from 19 g to 34 g depending on their age. These numbers are way higher for active athletes.

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