7 Types of Protein, Their Functions, and Sources

Did you know, protein has various functions based on its type. Anything? Find out more here.

When talking about healthy food, protein must have been heard often. One form of this macronutrient is indeed important for muscle building and overall body health.

However, did you know, protein is not just food sources such as eggs and meat. There are various types of protein, differentiated in function in the body and source (vegetable and animal).

In the body, proteins are large, complex molecules that have many important roles. Some of its tasks include supporting the structure, function and regulation of tissues in the body.

In this article, we will discuss various types of protein and their sources in more depth. Come on, take a look!

Types of Proteins Based on Their Functions 

Protein itself consists of hundreds or even thousands of smaller units called amino acids. Amino acids are linked to each other in long chains.

There are 20 types of amino acids that combine to make 1 type of protein. The sequence of amino acids determines the unique three-dimensional structure of each protein and its specific function. There are seven types of proteins with their respective functions in the body:

  1. Enzyme proteins 

This protein speeds up biochemical reactions and helps the process of digestion of food. Enzyme proteins can be found in saliva (salivary amylase, salivary kallikrein , and lingual lipase). Salivary amylase in saliva will break down starch into sugar.

  1. Hormone proteins

This protein is responsible for coordinating certain body functions. The function of hormone proteins is involved in controlling blood sugar (in insulin), helping labor contractions (in oxytocin), and helping the growth of proteins in muscle cells (in somatropin).

  1. Structural proteins 

This type of protein is stringy and fibrous. This protein supports various other proteins such as collagen, keratin, and elastin. Keratin strengthens skin, nails and hair. Meanwhile, collagen and elastin support the condition of connective tissue such as tendons and ligaments.

  1. Binding protein 

This type of protein binds and carries atoms and small molecules inside cells throughout the body. The function of binding proteins can be found in ferritin. Ferritin is a protein that stores iron in hemoglobin.

  1. Protein transport 

These proteins move molecules from one place to another in the body. An example of a transport protein is hemoglobin. The function of hemoglobin is to transport oxygen through the blood using red blood cells.

  1. Antibody proteins 

This protein serves to defend the body from attacks by bacteria or viruses. The ability of antibody proteins is used to protect the immune system to identify and fight attacks by viruses and diseases.

  1. Driving Protein 

This type of protein functions in muscle contraction and movement when the body moves. Examples of motor proteins are actin and myosin.

Other articles: Best Protein Sources for Vegetarians

Types of Protein Based on Source

Protein-rich foods can support your overall health. Protein is needed to help the body’s immunity, form cell structure, growth, and various other benefits.

Therefore, it is very important to consume enough protein every day. Doctor Reza Fahlevi  explained that generally the protein needed a day is 15-20 percent of the total daily calorie needs.

“Calorie needs certainly vary, this is determined by gender and age. However, in general in a day we need protein as much as 15-20 percent of the total daily calorie needs,” he explained.

When viewed from the source, various types of protein are divided into two, namely animal and vegetable.

Another article: A Peek into the Ins and Outs of a High Protein Diet

  1. Animal protein

Some sources of animal protein have a variety of health benefits. For example, eating fish regularly is thought to help reduce cognitive decline and the incidence of heart disease .

Here are some sources of animal protein that you can consume:

  • Fish and other seafood
  • Egg
  • Cow’s milk and its processed products
  • Beef
  • Poultry meat such as chicken and turkey
  1. Vegetable protein

This type of vegetable protein is suitable for those of you who are vegan and vegetarian. It’s just that, make sure you eat a variety of vegetable proteins so that your daily needs can be met. Some plant protein sources may also take longer to digest in the body.

Here are some sources of vegetable protein that you can choose from:

  • Rice
  • Peas
  • Grains
  • Avocado
  • Soybeans and processed products, including tempeh and tofu
  • Wheat
  • Quinoa

Doctor Reza added that people who have protein allergies need to look for alternative food sources so that their daily calories are sufficient.

“Those who have allergies must be smarter in choosing their protein intake and know exactly what makes them allergic. For example, those who have a cow’s milk allergy should look for alternatives. “This is of course so that daily protein intake can be met optimally,” he explained.

Abbas Jahangir

I am a researcher and writer with a background in food and nutritional science. I am the founder of Foodstrend.com, our reputable online platform offering scientifically-backed articles on health, food, nutrition, kitchen tips, recipes, diet, and fitness. With a commitment to providing accurate and reliable information, we strive to empower our readers to make informed decisions about their health and lifestyle choices. Join us on Foodstrend.com's journey toward a healthier and happier lifestyle.

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