We Indians love our food and are always proud to exclaim that our kitchens use the richest brand of Ghee, the best spices and so on. However, a multi-city survey conducted by IMRB known as The Protein Consumption in the Diet of Adult Indians Survey has revealed that nine out of every 10 Indians suffer from protein deficiency. So where are we going wrong?
It is common belief that vegetarians are more prone to protein deficiency as they do not get the goodness of meat. However, the survey clearly reveals that whereas 91% of hardcore veggies are protein deficient, the non-vegetarians are not far behind with a staggering 85%.
So how much of these building blocks does the human body require? According to experts, protein consumption should be approximately 1 gm per kg of the body weight of a person. Results have shown that Indians consume foods that are extremely rich sources of both fat and starch but are insufficient in their protein content.
Another reason for India being a protein deficient area is that a large majority of the population is purely vegetarian. Although as a veggie you can get your daily dose of proteins from fruits, this protein is not as easily available for the body to be digested as for example, the protein in eggs or meat.
The survey has revealed another alarming fact – for every single person among the general population, there is a definitive gap between the adequate protein requirement and actual protein consumption. Delhi reported the highest protein gap at a dangerous 99%, whereas Mumbai scored the highest with the lowest protein gap of 68%. On an average, around 88% people have been found to consume an amount of protein which is less than the adequate amount required for healthy and smooth functioning of the body.
Protein deficiency is a serious issue, as it is the root for a number of troublesome conditions such as fatigue and extreme weakness. A continuous decrease in the dietary protein intake also eventually leads to diabetes, severely high triglyceride levels, excessive hair fall and belly fat. Inadequate protein levels in the body are also linked with an increased fragility, thus making the body more vulnerable to injuries and increasing the average healing time. Moreover, the poor muscle mass exhibited by Indians at large can be traced back to our habits of consuming insufficient amount of protein on a daily basis.
Yes it’s scary, isn’t it? Well, the good news is that although a majority of us are protein deficient, it takes only a little amount of care and improvement in our daily dietary habits in order to provide our bodies with a sufficient amount of protein. Make sure to build a protein-intensive diet for yourself that consists of products such as eggs, meat and fish. For the vegetarians, fill up your meals with nuts, seeds, milk and other dairy products, legumes, dry beans, grains, and protein-rich fruits and vegetables.
It is not rocket-science to give yourself enough protein; all you need is a healthy diet which fills your body with the required goodness and energy of these amazing nutrients. Happy eating!