From our muscles to our skin, our bones to our hair, most things in our body need protein. But when we’re fasting, it can be easy to forget the importance of maintaining adequate protein levels in our diet — and when this goes out of the window, things can start to go south pretty fast.
Ensuring you get enough protein is essential around a fast, particularly due to its contribution to maintaining muscle mass. When you’re losing body mass during a fast, your body can start to use muscle as fuel to keep running. Eating enough protein can assist in minimizing muscle loss, according to research published in Advances in Nutrition.
Not getting enough protein doesn’t just impact your muscles, too. Eating higher amounts of protein will keep you fuller for longer, says EatingWell, which may help you stave off hunger pangs during fasting intervals. Given that protein impacts bone and hair health, it’s also important to consume enough to keep them strong, and reduce the risk of breakage (both in terms of brittle hair and bone fractures). We also need enough protein to keep our immune system strong and healthy. In short? Eat your protein, folks.