Protein: The Most Misunderstood Nutrient

By Dr. Bob McCauley

Proteins are large biological molecules consisting of one or more long chains of amino acids.   Proteins were first described by the Dutch chemist Gerardus Johannes Mulder and named by the Swedish chemist Jöns Jacob Berzelius in 1838. Today, protein is used as an excuse why someone shouldn’t become a vegan or vegetarian.  Lack of is protein is “the reason people become anemic” when they don’t eat enough animal protein, meat, fish, eggs and/orProtein Chain dairy, which is partially true.    Protein is only one of numerous nutrients required by the body for our health.  It certainly is not the most important nutrients when you stop to consider how critical oxygen is for example.  I believe the most important nutrient is Chlorophyll, in my opinion, for a number of reasons.

The reason that eating animal protein is one of the worst things for our health is simple. Let’s first establish that everyone always cooks their animal protein.  Rarely does anyone eat raw meat, fish, eggs or dairy, although there is a strong movement to consume raw dairy, in particular raw goat’s milk.   I am not against eating raw animal protein, but it certainly is not necessary for us to consume it if we wish to be healthy.  Eating raw animal protein is known as the Raw Paleo Diet – although definitions of the Paleo Diet vary dramatically.

Peptide Bond

Peptide Bond

The problem with animal protein is that it is a pre-formed protein chain of amino acids that are then brought to high temperatures during the cooking process.  The higher the temperature and the longer the animal protein is cooked at these temperatures, the more harmful the animal protein becomes to our health.  In a protein chain, what holds the amino acids together (links them) are peptides.  These peptide are temperature sensitive, and when exposed to high temperatures they break down and eventually disintegrate turning the protein into mush.  This is what makes cooked animal protein so dangerous to our health.  Although it is not desirable to eat cooked plants, exposing plant proteins (pre-digested amino acids) to high temperatures does not have the same deleterious effects on our health because these peptide chains do not exist in plant protein.

Spirulina and Chlorella are perfect proteins because they provide the body with the nine essential amino acids; yet they go much further.  Their amino acids are in a natural 400px-Peptidformationball.svgratio to one another.  Animal protein, on the other hand, has a limited complement of amino acids that are heavily weighted in some, yet drastically low in others.  This is one reason why the body does not react well to them and why they lead to so many diseases.

There is a lot of confusion and misinformation about protein, how much is in certain foods and what their amino acid structure actually consists of.  It is assumed that meat is comprised mostly of protein when it is only 16 – 20% protein on average.  Beef, for instance, has eleven amino acids and is heavily weighted in four of them, which is a lopsided amino acid complement.  What the body requires is a broad array of amino acids that are in the correct proportion to one aminoAcidsanother such as that found in Spirulina and Chlorella.  Even wheat grass juice is only 18% protein compared to over 60% for Spirulina and Chlorella, the highest percentage of protein of any whole foods.

Based on a traditional protein diet of meat, fish, eggs and dairy products, a 150-lb. adult would need 54 grams of animal protein per day in order to meet their recommended daily allowance.  Since meat is 18% protein on average, you would need nearly 300 grams of meat. If this were true of algae, a person would need to consume a minimum of 90 grams of algae to equal 54 grams of protein.  However, I am extremely active and take only 30 grams of algae each day, which translates into about 18 grams of protein.  Some would consider 30 grams of algae an enormous amount to consume each day, yet an extremely small amount of protein.  While 30 grams of algae may look like a lot when you actually see it, we need to remember that algae is a whole food, which helps put its recommended dosages into perspective.   Video: Defending the Vegan Diet.

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About Bob McCauley

Bob McCauley, ND (Robert F., Jr.) was raised in Lansing, Michigan and attended Michigan State University (BA, 1980 in Journalism). He is a naturopathic doctor, Master Herbalist and a Certified Nutritional Consultant. He has traveled extensively, both domestically and abroad, visiting over 32 countries. He published Confessions of a Body Builder: Rejuvenating the Body with Spirulina, Chlorella, Raw Foods and Ionized Water (2000), Achieving Great Health (2005), The Miraculous Properties of Ionized Water, (2006) which is the only book on the market that exclusively addresses Ionized Water, Twelve (Fiction, 2007) and Honoring the Temple of God (2008). He considers himself a Naturalist, meaning he pursues health in the most natural way possible. He studies and promotes nature as the only way to true health. From 2002-2004 he hosted the radio program Achieving Great Health, which was heard by thousands of people each day. His guests included some of the most well-known and respected names in the natural health world. With the help of his father, Dr. Robert F. McCauley, Sr. (Doctorate in Environmental Engineering, MIT, 1953) they started Spartan Water Company in 1992, which sold vended water machines in supermarkets. Robert Jr. founded Spartan Enterprises, Inc. in 1993. He is a Certified Water Technician with the State of Michigan. He is also a Type II Public Water Supply Specialist and has the certifications of S-5 and D-5. The McCauley family has a long history in the water industry. Bob's father pioneered environmental issues regarding ground water and drinking water quality. He received his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1953 for his thesis on removing radioactive strontium from water. He earned his doctorate in Environmental Engineering in less than 2 years, one of the shortest doctoral studies in the history of MIT. He taught civil, sanitary and environmental engineering at Michigan State University for 18 years before retiring to run Wolverine Engineers & Surveyors of Mason, Michigan, for 17 years. His reputation throughout Michigan as a water quality expert was legendary. Bob worked for his father's company for 12 years learning the water business, which dealt primarily with municipalities, including water quality and sanitary sewer issues. After apprenticing with his father, Bob moved on to the bottled water business. He established greater Michigan's biggest selling bottled water: Michigan Mineral – Premium Natural Water. He was introduced to Ionized Water in 1995 and has done more to promote Ionized Water than anyone else in the industry. Bob often lectures and offers seminars on his Seven Component Natural Health Protocol . Bob is a Certified Nutritional Consultant and a Certified Master Herbalist. He is also a 3rd Degree Black Belt and Certified Instructor of Songahm Taekwondo (American Taekwondo Association).
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2 Responses to Protein: The Most Misunderstood Nutrient

  1. Pingback: 50/50 – Two Most Powerful Foods in One Tablet | Bob McCauley's Blog

  2. Proteins image needed

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