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News > Servicemembers: protein fuels the fight
Servicemembers: protein fuels the fight

Posted 11/16/2012   Updated 11/16/2012 Email story   Print story


by Airman 1st Class Mariah Haddenham
36th Wing Public Affairs

11/16/2012 - ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam -- In continuing the 90 at 90 legacy of the former 36th Wing Commander, Brig. Gen. John Doucette, Team Andersen strives for 90 percent of their servicemembers to receive a 90 percent or higher on their physical training test. Nutrition is among the most important aspects of physical health and a protein-balanced diet is the first step.

There are various types of proteins, to include whey or dairy protein, animal protein and plant protein.

Animal and dairy proteins are considered complete proteins because they have all amino acids necessary to build new cells.

Plant protein is considered an incomplete protein because it does not contain all necessary amino acids. However, it is possible to combine two incomplete proteins, such as beans and rice, in order to create a complete protein.

Of all proteins, animal protein is the most essential to the human body.
"A lack of animal-based protein in the diet can lead to anemia and weakening of the immune system," said Tech. Sgt. Autumn Bradford, 36th Medical Operations Squadron dietary therapist. "The body needs the vitamins and nutrients found in these types of proteins to make hemoglobin, the substance in the blood cells that helps them carry oxygen."

Excellent sources of protein include meat, eggs, dairy, cheese, nuts, grains and soy. The recommended daily serving size is two to three servings a day. Following these servings and a balanced diet helps the body rebuild itself.

Along with repairing the body, protein also strengthens the immune system. The stomach digests protein slower than other types of food.

"Protein is essential for our bodies to operate smoothly," said Maj. Dana Baker, 36th MDOS aerospace medicine flight commander. "It helps heal our muscles and aids with the growth and repair of our entire body."

For additional information on protein and a balanced diet, contact the Health and Wellness Center's certified dietary therapist, Sergeant Bradford, at 366-3199.

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