Amino acids are compounds that are crucial to the formation of proteins in our body. They to stimulate growth, digestion, repair tissue, help provide energy and boost the functioning of our major organs. We get some amino acids from both plants and animals. In this article, we’ll focus on the best animal sources of amino acids.
Types of Amino Acids Overview
Essential amino acids, conditional amino acids, and the nonessential amino acids are the three classifications of our protein builders.
Arginine, glycine, praline, and cysteine are among the examples of conditional amino acids. These are not that crucial to our health except for those who specifically need them to help them overcome their stress and diseases. Meanwhile, nonessential amino acids are those that are being produced by our bodies such as glutamic acids, asparagines, and alanine.
Essential amino acids are those that we can get from vegetables, fruits and animal meats. Included in the last group are the nine important ones- namely histidine, methionine, leucine, valine, threonine, tryptophan, phenylalanine, isoleucine, and lysine.
It is not necessary that we obtain these amino acids in each meal that we have. What is important is that we have them balanced for the entire day. According to studies, having a diet of vegetables and fruits only is not enough to get all the amino acids that we need. In this regard, it is just crucial that we mix them with some grains as well as lean meats to have a better diet plan. To ensure that we have the proteins that we need, here are the best animal sources of amino acids that we can always add to our daily meals.
Best Animal Sources of Essential Amino Acids
Before going into the details of the best animal sources of amino acids, it is important to first discuss the health benefits that we can get from animal protein. Medical and scientific experts agree that there are some nutrients that we can only get from animal food sources and not from plants. Among these are the vitamin B-12 as well as heme iron. The vitamins that we can get from animal protein are helpful to boost energy production as well as muscle buildup.
If you are into leaner meat, then you should go for pork that is from the pig’s lower half part as well as the hindquarters. Meat obtained from this area is composed of 2.2 grams saturated fat and 19 grams protein. For those who prefer the tenderloins, they should know that for every 85 grams of cooked meat, the protein level that they will get is expected to be around 24 grams while the saturated fat is 1.3 grams.
Perfect for those who are aiming to enhance their daily diet of amino acids, eating dishes with beef will help them achieve this goal. Several factors affect the levels of saturated fat as well as amino acids that we can get from beef such as the sizes or cuts of beef added to our meals. In addition, experts agree that the nutrients that we can obtain from meat are also affected by how the beef has been taken care of or raised.
Hindquarters beef are believed to have the same level of saturated fat and protein. However, if you are looking for the meat part with high protein but low-fat content, then your best shot is the meat from the lower loin. According to researchers, 25 grams of protein will be obtained from 85 grams of meat from the mentioned cut.
One of the best animal sources of amino acids is the shellfish as it contains the leanest type of protein. Among all the shellfish, shrimps contain all the important nine amino acids that our body needs. Studies found that there is no saturated fat but only 20 grams of protein can be found in every 85 grams of shrimps.
Another shellfish with protein content is the scallop. Next to shrimps, we can get 17 grams of protein from every 85 grams of this shellfish. Finally, 16 grams of protein can be obtained from every 100 grams of oysters in our meal.
After running through the shellfish, let’s proceed to the most loved seafood, the fish. Among the fishes with the top content of protein is the rainbow trout. Aside from having 20 grams of protein for every 85 grams of this fish, we can also get enough omega-3 fatty acids which are also important to protect us from having serious diseases. Like the rainbow trout, salmon is also perfect for those who want to add protein and omega-3 fatty acids to their diet.
In contrast to the common knowledge that egg yolk is not that healthy, this part of the egg is pumped up with vitamins and nutrients that we need. It contains animal protein and can be a healthy source of good cholesterol if eaten moderately. However, if you are really opting for a higher protein source, then you should try the albumen or the white part of the egg as it does not just contain 3.6 grams of protein, it is also rich in potassium, magnesium, and riboflavin.
If you are one of the people who is limiting their pork, beef and seafood intake, then it is best to eat turkey and chicken white meat to obtain the amino acids that you need. It is a well-known fact that the leanest source of protein in chicken is the breast part given that it is prepared without the skin and the bone. Nutritionists promote the white meat as it has 26 grams of protein for every 85 grams of breast as compared to 18 grams of protein in chicken thighs.
As an alternative to chicken, turkey meat is a good option. This is because the saturated fat from 85 grams of breast is only 0.5 grams while its protein reaches 26 grams.
With all of these are good sources of protein, nothing beats having a daily meal that combines lean meat with vegetables. By having this, you will be assured that you obtain higher protein levels than just eating vegetables or lean meats alone.