Protein Deficiency

Protein Deficiency: Overview

Protein is an essential component of the body.  The organs, muscle, brain, nerves, and immune system are all, to some degree, comprised of protein.  You name the body structure, and it probably has some protein in it.  Since protein is one of the fundamental building blocks for the body, you need to ensure that you get enough in your diet.

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Every protein molecule is composed of amino acids.  Twenty amino acids are used in different combinations to build the protein molecules found in food and in the body's structures.  Nine of these amino acids are considered essential, and must be supplied through the diet.  The other eleven amino acids (non-essential amino acids) can either be consumed in the diet or manufactured from other building blocks within the body.

Signs, symptoms & indicators of Protein Deficiency:

Symptoms - Nails

Occasional/regular/frequent hangnails

Because nails are found at the extremities, they are the last to receive oxygen and nutrients carried in the blood.  Therefore, they often show signs of deficiencies sooner than other tissues.

Conditions that suggest Protein Deficiency:

Digestion

Metabolic

Edema (Water Retention)

When protein (especially albumin) levels in your blood go too low, the colloidal osmotic pressure will decrease and allow fluid to escape from blood vessels into your tissues, resulting in edema or swelling of the hands, feet, ankles, knees and/or belly.

Nutrients

Vitamin A Requirement

A deficiency of protein or zinc can reduce the amount of vitamin A released from the liver.

Risk factors for Protein Deficiency:

Lab Values - Nutrients

Medical Procedures

Symptoms - Food - Preferences

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Protein Deficiency suggests the following may be present:

Nutrients

Protein Deficiency can lead to:

Digestion

Recommendations for Protein Deficiency:

Diet

Not recommended
Therapeutic Fasting

Fasting should not be used when there is malnutrition.

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KEY

Weak or unproven link: may suggest
Weak or unproven link:
may suggest
Strong or generally accepted link: is often a sign or symptom of; often increases risk of; often suggests; often leads to
Strong or generally accepted link:
is often a sign or symptom of; often increases risk of; often suggests; often leads to
Very useful: is highly recommended for
Very useful:
is highly recommended for
Often counterindicated: is often not recommended for
Often counterindicated:
is often not recommended for