Proteins are the building blocks for our body’s bones, muscles, skin, and other tissues, as well as hormones, enzymes, antibodies, and more. Each gram of protein also supplies the body with 4 calories. You need dietary protein every day to keep our cells functioning properly.
The IOM (Institute of Medicine) recommends that 10% – 35% of your total calories should come from protein. Sources of high quality protein include lean meat, poultry, fish, cheese, eggs, yogurt, milk, and soy products. If you are a vegan (that is, you do not eat any animal products), you can obtain adequate protein by eating a variety of whole grains, legumes, vegetables, nuts and soy products (soy milk, tofu, tempeh) daily.