The Power of Protein for Older Adults
Wellness March 26, 2018

The Power of Protein for Older Adults

It is an established fact that protein plays a significant role in our lives. They contribute greatly to the growth, development, maintenance, and repair of our body cells.

We get protein from the food we eat. However, when you grow older, you need more protein than what you usually consume. This is because at that age your body loses the muscle mass and protein is the solution to maintain a healthy muscle mass.

Moreover, your body’s ability to break down and process the protein also decreases, making it even more important for you to increase your protein intake.

How much protein should you consume?
To determine how much protein your body needs, one of the major factors considered is the activity level of the person. For healthy adults who are not into rigorous training, 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body mass is recommended. Adults who exercise or train hard for competitive sports will need a higher protein intake ranging from 1.4 to 2.0 grams per kilogram of body mass.

What happens if you do not consume enough dietary proteins?
A deficiency of protein in your old age can lead to several serious complications. Some of the possible health concerns that you might face are as follows:

Progressive loss of body muscle – It is a known fact that as you age, gradually your body starts losing it muscle mass. But if you have a protein deficiency then the loss is evidently more rapid.

You can prevent this rapid loss of muscle mass by increasing your animal protein intake. Senior people who have a high intake of animal protein have more lean mass than those who do not eat enough of protein.

Cognitive disorders – Cognitive disorders like dementia and Alzheimer’s is not a rare occurrence in old people.

Many researchers and doctors believe that by increasing your animal protein intake you can also reduce your chances or delay the onset of cognitive disorders.

Increased skin fragility – People who have a poor dietary intake of protein experience an early case of skin fragility.

Slow healing of wounds – Protein plays a significant role in the process of healing injuries and wounds. Dietary protein helps in producing collagen, which helps in repairing the damaged tissues of the area where you develop a wound. Unfortunately, during the whole wounding process, your body loses a considerable amount of protein. This means that it is imperative to increase your intake of dietary proteins in case of injuries.

Weak immune system – Your body uses the dietary protein you consume to build the protein within your body, including the protein that forms your immune system. Immunoglobulins or antibodies are, in fact, proteins present in the immune system that protects you from virus or bacteria attack.

How can you increase your protein intake?
You must know that the best way to increase your protein intake is by consuming dietary animal protein. Dietary animal protein is also rich in iron, vitamin B12, biotin, folic acid, and other essential nutrients that your body needs in the old age. Egg is another affordable source of high protein. You can also get a good quantity of protein from seafood.