14 Fun Facts You Didn’t Know About Protein

Protein fun facts.

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Protein fun food spread

Protein is a macronutrient essential for fuelling healthy working bodies.

Protein is integral to the biological processes that happen within our bodies, such as helping to build and repair muscle, giving cells their structure, transporting and storing nutrients, as well as forming our organs, glands, arteries and muscles. Protein is also essential for healing wounds and repairing tissue, especially in the muscles, skin, bones, and hair.

While we know that these amazing little molecules work within our bodies to enable growth and repair, there are many fascinating things about protein that most of us don’t know. Here are just some of the fun facts about protein that we’ve learnt; facts about eating protein, facts about the human body, and fun things about life.

We hope you enjoy reading this as much as we enjoyed writing it!

Protein smoothie

Adapted from Fact Retriever

Protein Fun Facts

1. It’s essential to all life

Protein exists in every one of the trillions of cells in the human body. Without it, no life could exist. Approximately 18-20% of the body is protein.

2. Greek origins

The word ‘protein’ is Greek and it comes from the word ‘proteios’ which means ‘primary’ or ‘first rank’. The word protein has been used since 1883.

3. You couldn’t grow or heal without it

Proteins are essential to the human body, and are responsible for many processes such as growing, healing, forming cell structure, carrying oxygen, protecting against disease, growing hair and nails, allowing eyesight, providing energy and more.

4. They have a short lifespan

There are about 100,000 different types of protein in the human body. The lifespan of most proteins totals two days or less.

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5. We would swell up without it

Without a protein called Albumin, the entire human body would swell.

6. Cheesey protein

The cheese with the highest amount of protein is low-sodium parmesan, with 41.6 grams of protein per 100g.

7. Fishy business

The fish that is highest in protein is Yellowfin Tuna, with 30 grams of protein per 100 grams, followed by anchovies, salmon, halibut and snapper.

8. It keeps us feeling full

Protein helps make a meal more satiating which, in turn, helps people maintain a healthy weight.

9. Not all proteins are digested equally

Because animal proteins are more similar to our proteins than are plant proteins, they are used more readily and rapidly. In other words, our bodies can use animal proteins slightly better than plant-based proteins.

protein fun smoothie

10. Gluten is a protein

Gluten is a protein found in wheat and other grains. When people have an allergic reaction to foods such as gluten, it’s because the structure of the protein itself triggers the reaction.

11. Human hair is protein

Hair is made up of a protein called keratin, which forms a helical shape. This protein has sulfur bonds, and the more sulfur links it has, the curlier a person’s hair will be.

12. Small country, big appetite

One of the smallest countries in the world, Luxemburg, is per capita the biggest meat eater. Luxembourgers eat on average about 300 pounds of meat annually per person.

13. The chicken or the egg?

Scientists concluded that the chicken came before the egg. This is because the protein which makes their eggshells can only be produced by hens.

14. There’s a pokemon protein

There is a protein called Pikachurin which was named after the Pokemon, Pikachu. There is also a protein called Sonic Hedgehog, named after Sonic the Hedgehog.

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