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The Way to BE

Part 1: How Much Protein Are You Actually Digesting?

You may be on a high-protein diet or taking a protein powder for health, energy, or fitness, but how well is your body digesting it?

Since animal proteins and unfermented vegan shakes are both difficult to digest, you are lucky if you obtain 20 percent of it or a partial amount of the protein that’s on the label.

Even though we're eating protein, we're really not digesting protein most of the time. As a result, many people are protein-malnourished, and they don't even realize it. There are subtle signs of protein malnourishment that include anxiety.

easy to digest protein powder

You can enjoy fermented protein as a meal replacement, supplement, or snack, but also try having some fermented protein as the last meal of the day. Eat light, solid food between 10-4 p.m. and then have fermented protein for dinner around 7-8 p.m. This can help you sleep better. Our Fermented Protein Shake can help control blood sugar spikes, which is one of the reasons people wake up in the night.

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What does protein malnourishment look like?

You’ll know if you're protein-malnourished, even a little bit. Your cortisol will go up, and that will make you feel more stressed. This is exactly why I'm a big supporter and user of fermented protein powders: They're excellent at helping you get extra protein into your body, other than eating a protein meal. I consider them as essential proteins, though you may still be eating animal protein for meals.

What most people don’t know is how many misconceptions there are about protein.

If you want to choose the right protein shake and meal supplement for you, there are five powerful truths you need to know first:

Why choose fermented protein? 5 important facts

1. Fermented protein is digested best.

Most of us are eating animal protein, but we aren’t assimilating much of it. Other protein shakes may promise you 15-21 grams per serving, but unless it’s fermented, most likely you'll only obtain a small percentage of that.

2. The kind of protein that you consume really matters.

Some people do well on milk kefir as a source of protein. But if you find that you don’t tolerate dairy or have leaky gut, a Fermented Protein Shake can be a welcome alternative. Across the board, most people I see thrive when they’re eating non-dairy, vegan protein.

3. You don’t have to eat too much protein.

Keeping the Body Ecology 80/20 Rule in mind, only high-quality protein is best. Don’t overdo it. After you eat protein, you want to move your body and get outside -- you’ll feel so much better when you do. And if after eating protein you feel sleepy, you can take it to the bank that you have leaky gut.

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4. Ammonia builds up when you don’t digest protein.

Undigested protein turns into ammonia, a very dangerous endogenous toxin.1 Most ammonia in the body forms when protein is broken down by bacteria in the intestines. But if you don’t chew properly, eat under stress, have low stomach acid, don’t have enough pancreatic enzymes in the small intestine, are blood type A -- these are all reasons why you might not be receiving the full benefits of the protein you’re eating.

The liver normally converts ammonia into urea. When excessive amounts of ammonia enter the central nervous system, ammonia short circuits the transporter potassium into the brain’s glial cells. The potassium then accumulates around nerve cells, and the brain’s defenses against ammonia are overpowered. Then, the liver gets overburdened dealing with environmental toxins, sugar, stress, chemicals, alcohol, and bad fats. When the liver is overburdened from these toxins, ammonia levels are not converted to urea, and the liver becomes congested.

Consuming a Fermented Protein Shake that your body can easily digest can help to halt this harmful cycle and reduce ammonia buildup.

5. Even vegan protein maintains muscle tone.

Sometimes, I get so busy, and I forget to have my fermented protein shake. Within just four days, I realize I’ve begun to lose my muscle definition. Now I make it a point, even though I’m eating three meals a day, to have my shake no matter what. As we age, everyone begins to lose muscle mass. Considering that I'm in my 70s, I’m very aware of the dangers of sarcopenia. I have no intention of going there, no matter how old I get.

Since animal proteins and unfermented vegan shakes are both difficult to digest, you are lucky if you obtain 20 percent of it or a partial amount of the protein that’s on the label. A Fermented Protein Shake made with pea protein offers much more bioavailable protein, and it shows in the muscle you gain.2

Who is Donna Gates? She's the woman behind The Body Ecology Diet who's on a mission to change the way the world eats.

One big bonus: Blood sugar and weight loss

A Fermented Protein Shake that contains easily digested protein is the first step, but let’s consider the extras. Medicinal mushrooms, plus fermented protein, can provide powerful immune-boosting and blood-sugar-controlling benefits.3 Reishi, King Trumpet, Lion’s Mane, Cordyceps, Agaricus, Turkey Tails, Shiitake, and Maitake: Each mushroom can stand on its own as a superfood. Together, these organic mushrooms reinforce the gut barrier, while feeding the inner ecosystem.

Medicinal mushrooms are also great at balancing blood sugar, helping you to lose weight and feel your best.

Easily digestible. Vegan and non-dairy. High-quality, muscle-making protein with anti-ammonia properties. Medicinal mushrooms that aid in weight loss. You can find all of these benefits and more in our Body Ecology Fermented Protein Shake! To find out how protein affects blood sugar and weight loss, read Part 2 in our protein series next. And Part 3 discusses protein and muscle growth.

What To Remember Most About This Article:

If you're eating a high-protein diet or taking a protein powder for energy, fitness, or health, it's important to know how well your body is digesting it. It's easy to become protein-malnourished without realizing it, for this reason. Signs of protein malnourishment may include anxiety and feeling stressed, as cortisol levels start to go up.

To determine how well you're digesting your protein, consider these five truths:

  1. Your body digests fermented protein best. Unless a protein is fermented, you may only obtain a small percentage of what you eat.
  2. The kind of protein you're consuming matters. For those who don't tolerate fermented dairy or who have a leaky gut, a vegan Fermented Protein Shake is an ideal alternative.
  3. You don't need to eat too much protein. Here, the Body Ecology 80/20 Rule is a helpful guide. Don't overdo your protein consumption, and when you do eat protein, get outside and get moving.
  4. When you don't digest protein well, ammonia builds up. Ammonia is a dangerous endogenous toxin that forms when protein is broken down in the body. An overburdened liver and unfermented protein that is hard to digest can both contribute to harmful ammonia buildup.
  5. Vegan protein can help maintain muscle tone. Remember, you may get as little as 20 percent of the protein you eat from animal protein or an unfermented vegan protein shake. A vegan Fermented Protein Shake offers a bioavailable source of protein that can support muscle growth.

To make the Body Ecology Fermented Protein Shake a fully functional health and fitness tool, I also added powerful immune-boosting and blood-sugar-stabilizing medicinal mushrooms. Use my easily digestible Fermented Protein Shake to support healthy weight loss, improve energy levels, and fight off protein malnourishment -- try it as a meal supplement, meal replacement, or snack!

REFERENCES:

  1. Rangroo Thrane V, Thrane AS, Wang F, Cotrina ML, Smith NA, Chen M, Xu Q, Kang N, Fujita T, Nagelhus EA, Nedergaard M. Ammonia triggers neuronal disinhibition and seizures by impairing astrocyte potassium buffering. Nat Med. 2013 Dec;19(12):1643-8. doi: 10.1038/nm.3400.
  2. Babault N, Païzis C, Deley G, Guérin-Deremaux L, Saniez MH, Lefranc-Millot C, Allaert FA. Pea proteins oral supplementation promotes muscle thickness gains during resistance training: a double-blind, randomized, Placebo-controlled clinical trial vs. Whey protein. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2015 Jan 21;12(1):3. doi: 10.1186/s12970-014-0064-5. eCollection 2015. PubMed PMID: 25628520; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4307635. Wang, X. C., Xi, R. J., Li, Y.,
  3. Wang, D. M., & Yao, Y. J. (2012). The species identity of the widely cultivated Ganoderma,‘G. lucidum’(Ling-zhi). PLoS ONE, 7(7), e40857.

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Information and statements regarding dietary supplements/products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Information on this website is provided for informational purposes only and is a result of years of practice and experience by the author. This information is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional or any information contained on or in any product label or packaging. Do not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing medication or other treatment. Always speak with your physician or other healthcare professional before taking any medication or nutritional, herbal, or homeopathic supplement, or using any treatment for a health problem. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, contact your healthcare provider promptly. Do not disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking professional advice because of something you have read on this website.

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