Monday, November 28, 2011

Amino Acids - Protein

Protein is made out of nitrogen-containing molecules called amino acids. They are the basic building material for all living cells. Every cell in our body needs protein to stay alive. Proteins are necessary for tissue repair and constructing new tissues to replace dead cells.

Your muscles, hair, nails, skin and eyes are made of proteins. So are the cells that make up all the organs in your body system - nerves, lungs, liver, kidneys, heart, brain and your sex glands.

Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. When you consume protein, it is broken down into various amino acids and transported throughout your body through your blood. Your cells then pick and choose the amino acids that they need to construct new body tissues, blood cells, enzymes, hormones, etc.

There are 25 different amino acids that piece together to make various proteins for different use, like letters of the alphabet, each serving its own purpose. Of these, 8 are essential amino acids that are like the vowels. Just as you cannot form words without the vowels, you cannot build complete proteins without these essential amino acids.