Claudio Voarino - Clinical Nutrition and Herbalism Consultant - Dip. (C.N.C) Dip. (Cl. H.) Dip. (Med. H.) Dip. (H. Sc.) Cert. (F.H.)

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By Claudio Voarino
Truths And Facts About Amino Acids
Amino acids are chains of atoms which, when combined, act not only as building blocks for the construction of protein, but also have certain active functions which they perform, as long as there is life in the atoms composing such protein. In other words, amino acids are much more than just building blocks making up the protein. Contained within the protein of living plants, animals, and humans, the amino acids are the means of such a vast field of activities that no physical function is possible without them. Amino acids are a quality of all living matter, and are found in various forms in plants, animals, and humans. Plants obtain their amino acids from the air, the water, and the soil. Herbivore, frugivore, granivore, and folivore animals obtain their supply of amino acids from plant-based foods, while carnivore animals and humans get their daily quota of amino acids mainly from the concentrate protein of the flesh of various animals and from other animal-derived products. As for omnivores (both animals and humans), they have the biggest choice of amino acids.
Amino acids can also be defined as organic compounds that make up proteins, and can thus be considered the basic molecules of life. In other words, they are molecules which make up the larger molecules called proteins. There are 23 different principal amino acids, which consist mainly of carbon, oxygen, hydrogen, and nitrogen. There are only two amino acids which also include atoms of sulphur, while two others contain atoms of iodine. They are: Cystine, Iodogorgoic Acid, Methionine, and Thyroxine. Each amino acid has a common core structure consisting of two carbon atoms, two oxygen atoms, a nitrogen atom, and four hydrogen atoms, to which is attached a variable group, known as the R group. In glycine, the R group is a single hydrogen atom; in alanine, the R group consists of a carbon and three hydrogen atoms (methyl group). Amino acids are small molecules able to pass through membranes. When two or more amino acids are joined together, they are known as peptides. Proteins, both plant and animal-derived, are made up of peptide chains folded or twisted in characteristic shapes. Many different proteins are found in the cells of living organisms, but they are all made up of the same 23 amino acids, joined together in varying combinations (although other types of amino acid do occur infrequently in nature). Nine of these - the ‘essential’ amino acids - cannot be synthesized by humans and must be obtained from the diet. Children need a further two amino acids that are not essential for adults. Animals also need some preformed amino acids in their diet, but green plants can manufacture all the amino acids they need from simpler molecules, relying on energy from the Sun and minerals (including nitrates) from the soil.
We obtain the so-called ‘essential’ amino acids from the following three sources:
  1. The protein content of vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, and from fresh raw vegetable and fruit juices.

  2. The concentrated protein of the flesh and other products of various animals, and the concentrated food supplements.

  3. The air we breath.

Source number three, although familiar to every living creature, is little understood and considered as necessary protein nourishment. The air we breathe is composed approximately of 80% nitrogen and 20% oxygen, which are both essential constituents of all the amino acids and proteins. The former sustains respiration and constitutes an important percentage of human and animal bodies, while the latter generates heat. As I have already said above, all amino acids are composed of nitrogen, oxygen, hydrogen and carbon. The carbon in our food is constantly consumed by the oxygen we breathe, which is then distributed throughout our bodies by the blood. As for the nitrogen, which we breathe in the air, it is transported by the blood to the liver and converted into one of the atomic or molecular ingredients needed for the reconstruction of amino acids, which are then used to build new cell proteins as they are needed. (Knowing all this, we can better appreciate the therapeutical importance of a brisk daily walk in fresh unpolluted air. Apart from all the well-known health benefits of walking, this exercise can also supply us with two amino acid constituents.)

There are three principal groups of amino acids for humans: Non Essential - Essential - Conditionally Essential. The first group consist of Alanine, Asparagine, Aspartate, Cysteine, Glutamate, Glutamine, Glycine, Proline, Serine, and Tyrosine. The second group includes: Histidine, Isoleucine, Leucine, Lysine, Methionine, Phenylalanine, Threonine, Tryptophan, and Valine. Conditionally Essential amino acids are: Arginine, Cysteine, Glycine, Glutamine, Proline, Taurine, and Tyrosine. The list below contains only the ‘principal’ amino acids, but there are others which are less known; they are: Asparagine, Carnitine, Acetyl-l-Carnosine, Carnosine, Citrulline, Gamma-Aminobutryc Acid, Glutathione, Glutamine, Homocysteine, Ornithine, Serine, and Taurine. The first unsung truth about amino acids - no matter under which heading they are listed - is that they are all important!
In the list below, only plant-derived sources of amino acids are mentioned. This is because animal-derived amino acids are ‘third-hand’ ones; that is, they come from the flesh of animals which obtain their primary amino acids from plant-based sources. Of course, most amino acids are also plentiful in meat, fish, poultry, milk, cheese, eggs, or a combination of these six groups of animal-derived foods. This list of principal amino acids shows their composition, where they can be found, as well as their most important functions, activities and characteristics. The names of the “essential” amino acids are underlined. Amino acids marked with an asterisk (*) become essential if the body is out of balance, or diseased, and must be provided from food or supplements. Here, it is very important to note that all the characteristics and functions of the amino acids listed below are derived exclusively from those found in foods which are raw and unprocessed!
As the amino acid subject is a lengthy and complex one, some information is likely to be missing in this list.
List of the principal amino acids
1. Alanine - composition: carbon 40%, hydrogen 8%, oxygen 36%, nitrogen 16%. Its molecular weight is about 89. It is a component of calcium pantothenate (one of the vitamin class). Functions: involved in the healthy condition of the skin, particularly that of the scalp and the hair. It is a factor in the balance and healthy operation of the adrenal glands, contributes to thymus growth, helps metabolise tryptophan and vitamin B6, increases lymphocyte division, inhibites pyruvate kinase, regulates glucose metabolism, triggers glucagon release. Therapeutic uses: agitated depression, cancer, diabetes, enlarged prostate, high cholesterol, hypoglycaemia, kidney stone prevention, poor immunity, post exercise ketosis, renal diseases. The following raw foods contain Alanine: alfalfa, chlorella, raw unsalted almonds, avocados, olives, carrots, celery, dandelion, lettuce, cucumbers, turnips, green peppers, spinach, watercress, plums, apples, apricots, grapes, guavas, oranges, strawberries, tomatoes, and wheat germ.

2. Arginine (*) - composition: carbon 41.5%, hydrogen 8%, oxygen 18.5%, nitrogen 32%. Molecular weight, about 174. Functions: involved in the contracting functions of the muscles; it is an important constituent of the cartilage - the tissue from which bones are formed by the natural process of calcification. It is essential in the structure and function of the reproductive organs. It helps to control the degeneration of body-cells, thus safeguarding the tissue from the formation of ulcers and cancers. Precursor for polyamines required for proliferative responses characteristic in healing; metabolised to L-proline - a major constituent of collage; exerts anti-hypotensive and anti-proliferative effect on vascular smooth muscle; precursor of agmatine - an endogenous noncatecholarnine ligand for central alpha 2 adreno receptor (modulates chronic pain sensitivity; improves sperm motility; reduces intraglomerular pressure (in the kidney) through the production of nitric oxide; reduces toxicity of protein loadin; reduces platelet aggregation in hypercholesterolemia patients; stimulates the immune system by significantly increasing natural killer (NK) and lymphokine activated killer cell cytotoxicity; detoxifies ammonia, glycogenic, methyl donor; enhances protein synthesis and thymus gland activity; inhibits cellular proliferation - therefore may block the formation of tumours; stimulates T-lymphocytes, involved in collagen and elastin synthesis - therefore important for wound healing, involved in creatine and creatinine synthesis, glucagon, haemoglobin, insulin, vasopressin; precursor of ornithine and urea; substrate for the generation of nitric oxide (endothelial relaxing factor; stimulates the release of gastrin, growth hormone and insulin. Therapeutic uses: alcohol abuse, atherosclerosis, balloon angioplasty, cardiac surgery cancer, carbon tetrachloride toxicity, chemotherapy, congestive heart failure, chronic pain, diabetes, erection problems, fatty liver, glucose intolerance, gut derived infections, high blood cholesterol, hyperammonia, hypertension (salt sensitive), ischaemic heart disease, intermittent claudication, kidney damage, kidney hypertrophy, liver disease, low birth weight infants, low sperm count, male infertility, muscle building, poor immunity, steroid medication, wound healing. Arginine also helps to control the degeneration of body-cells, thus safeguarding the tissues from the formation of ulcers and cancer.
The following foods contain Arginine: alfalfa, chlorella, Moringa leaves, spirulina, and other green vegetables, carrots, spinach, beets, broccoli, cucumbers, celery, tomatoes, squash, lettuce, radishes, peas, raw potatoes, parsnips, turnips, garlic, peanuts, ginseng, pecans, peas, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, macadamia nuts, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, cashews, pine nuts, pistachios, almonds, walnuts, peanuts, coconuts, oats, soy protein, and whole wheat.

3. Aspartic Acid - composition: carbon 36%, hydrogen 5.5%, oxygen 48%, nitrogen 10.5%. Molecular weight about 133. Functions: helps to retard the destruction of bone and teeth, and protects the diffusion of calcium from the blood to the tissues. Involved in the functions of the lungs and respiratory channels and in the activities of the heart and of the blood vessels. It also facilitates ammonia detoxification, bone calcification, brain energy metabolism, glyocoprotein synthesis, pyrimidine synthesis, and the transamination and deamination reaction involved in the urea cycle. Therapeutic uses: Athletes, bone formation, chronic fatigue, enhances potassium and magnesium uptake in salt form, e.g. potassium and magnesium aspartate, radiation therapy, renal diseases.
The following foods are sources of Aspartic Acid: chlorella, lemons, grapefruit, bananas, unsalted almonds, apples, apricots, carrot, celery, cucumber, parsley, pineapple, melons, radishes, spinach, tomatoes, turnip tops, watercress, watermelon, avocado, oat flakes, and sprouting seeds.
4. Cysteine (*) - composition: carbon 30%, hydrogen 5%, oxygen 26.5%, nitrogen 11.5%, sulphur 27%. Molecular weight 240. Functions: important element in the formation of red blood corpuscles. Active in the maintenance of health in the tissues and in resistance to poisons and infections. Involved in the functions of the mammary glands, particularly during lactation. Component of insulin, skin, hair, coenzyme A, heparin, biotin, lipoic acid, glutathione, glucose tolerance factor, and metallothienes, detoxifies chemicals, involved in conjugation reactions, involved in the synthesis of lipoic acid, antioxidant properties, N-acetylcysteine has been found to reduce the invasiveness and metastatic potential of melanoma cells and to inhibit endothelial cell invasion by a direct inhibition of matrix metalloproteinases (MMP5), an amino acid transporter across membranes, precursor of taurine.
Therapeutic uses
: ageing, AIDS, allergies, asthma, bronchitis, burns, chemical sensitivity, chemotherapy, chronic liver disease, chronic obstructive airway disease, cuts, cyclophosphamide toxicity, cystic fibrosis, cytotoxic effects of chemotherapy, diabetes, doxorubicin toxicity emphysema, hair weakness and hair loss, heavy metal toxicity, HIV infection, induced liver toxicity, inflammatory conditions, sepsis, tobacco addition, psoriasis, virally induced nutritional deficiency, Wilson’s disease. The following foods are sources of Cystine: alfalfa, chlorella, carrots, beets, spinach, cabbage, cauliflower, chives, onions, garlic, kale, horseradish, radishes, Brussels sprouts, apples, currants, pineapple, raspberries, Brazil nuts, hazel nuts, raisins, and filberts.

5. Glutamic Acid (*) - composition: carbon 41%, hydrogen 6%, oxygen 43.5%, nitrogen 9.5%, Molecular weight 147. Constitutes one-fifth of the components of the insulin molecule. Functions: Involved in the secretion of the digestive juices in the system and in the formation of glycogen. Essential in the action of amylolytic enzymes in changing glycogen into energy sugar through the liver. Its function is strongly disinfecting. It is a factor in the prevention of anemia, and inhibiting or retarding the destruction of the functions of Vitamin C. Glutamic Acid facilitates ammonia detoxification and bone calcification and enhances lymphocyte mitogenic function; it is an essential precursor of nucleotide synthesis and an excitatory neurotransmitter. Improves gut IgA levels, improves gut immunity, maintains acid base balance, maintains muscle mass, precursor to gamma amino butyric acid (GABA), gamma hydroxy butyric acid (GHBA) and gamma butyro-lactone which act as neuroinhibitory transmitters, promotes healing and bowel rescue, regulates acid/base balance, supports gut mucosal growth, and supports renal ammoniagenesis. Therapeutic uses: ageing, AIDS, alcoholism, autism, behavioural problems, bone formation, chemically sensitive individuals, chemotherapy, CNS nitrogen depletion, depression, epilepsy, trauma, gut irritation, hypertension, immune suppression, IQ improvement, infection, inhibited neurotransmission, leaky gut syndrome, poor concentration, radiation damage, radio- chemotherapy, senility, sepsis, stress, surgery, surgical stress, ulcers, viral induced nutrient deficiency, wound healing. The following foods contain Glutamic Acid: chlorella, string beans, Brussels sprouts (raw), carrots, bananas, spinach, cabbage, celery, beet tops, mint, turnip tops, dandelion, parsley, lettuce, spinach, papaya, and rolled oats.

6. Glycine (*) - composition: carbon 32%, hydrogen 7%, oxygen 42.5%, nitrogen 18.5%. Molecular weight 75.
involved in the formation of cartilage and fibers of the muscles. It exercises a controlling influence on the excess generation of sex hormones. This amino acid performs the most biochemical functions of any amino acids. Constituent of collagen and many protein hormones, glutathione, glycogenic, increases growth hormone release, increases renal clearance of uric acid, inhibitory neurotransmitter (activates glycine gated chloride channel), involved in the synthesis of nucleic acids, bile salts, creatine, haemoglobin and serine, liver detoxification, detoxifies phenols, salicylates, benzoic acid and methionine, lowers triglycerides, reduces residual volume in bladder, modulates the activity of hepatic and alveolar macrophages, neutrophils and lymphocytes, anti-angiogenic effects, anti inflammatory, immunomodulator, cytoprotective, activates chloride channels in plasma membranes.
Therapeutic uses:
alcoholic hepatitis, arthritis, athletic performance, autoimmune induced tumours, benign prostatic hypertrophy, cancer, CNS trauma, chemical sensitivity, chemically induced ulcers, cyclosporin toxicity, cyclosporin renal injury, detoxification of benzoic acid and salicylates, endotoxemia, epilepsy, gout, haemorrhagic stroke, hypermania, hypoxia, ischaemic reperfusion injury, isovaleric acidemia, leg ulcers, inflammatory disease, liver transplants, liver ischaemic reperfusion injury melanoma, myasthenia, nail growth, neurotoxic cell death, poor digestion, renal disease, respiratory distress syndrome, sepsis, spasticity spinal injuries, stress induced ulcers, stroke, wound healing (in the presence of arginine). The following foods are good sources of Glycine: chlorella, carrots, dandelion, turnips, celery, parsley, spinach, almonds (fresh, unsalted), alfalfa, okra, garlic, raw potatoes, figs, oranges, lemons, huckleberries, raspberries, pomegranates, and watermelon.
7. Histidine - composition: carbon 46%, hydrogen 6%, oxygen 21%, nitrogen 27%. Molecular weight 155. Active in the function of the liver in the formation of glycogen. Functions: involved in the control of pathogenic mucus in the system. An important component of the haemoglobin of the blood and of the motile generative element of the semen which serves to impregnate the ovum at conception. It is therefore closely involved in pregnancy complications, such as abortion, premature and still births, sterility, etc. This amino acid chelates copper and zinc, gastric secretion, glycogenic amino acid, increases the release of ACTH during acute stress, and it is involved in the synthesis of collagen, haemoglobin, myelin sheath, purine, pyrimidine; it potentiates the action of TSH-RP and luteinizing hormone releasing factors, precursor of histamine (neuro-inhibitor), carnosine and anserine, regulates the release of catecholamines in the hypothalamus and heart, and has vasodilatory and hypotensive action.
Therapeutic uses:
allergic conditions, anaemia, arthritis, auditory dysfunction, free floating anxiety, heavy metal toxicity, histopenic schizophrenia, hypertension, kidney failure. Parkinson’s disease, poor memory, radiation therapy, rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid problems, ulcers, uraemia. The following foods are good sources of Histidine: chia, chlorella, spirulina, Moringa leaves, avocados, carrots, bananas, tomatoes, potatoes, sweet potatoes, garlic, cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, horseradish, radishes, carrots, beets, celery, cucumbers, endive (chicory), leeks, garlic, onions, dandelions, peas, okra, kale, squash, turnip tops, alfalfa, spinach, sorrel, apples, pineapple, pomegranates, coconut, ripe and green papaya, brown rice, and wheat germ.
8. Hydroxy glutamic Acid - composition: carbon 37%, hydrogen 5%, oxygen 49%, nitrogen 9%. Molecular weight 163. Very similar in its functions to those of glutamic acid, with greater emphasis on its control over the generation of gastric juices in the system. The following foods are good sources of Hydroxy glutamic Acid: carrots, celery, parsley, lettuce, spinach, mint, tomatoes, grapes, huckleberries, raspberries, and plums.

9. Hydroxy proline - composition: carbon 46%, hydrogen 7%, oxygen 36.5%, nitrogen I0.5%. Molecular weight 131. Functions: involved in the activities of the liver and gall bladder, particularly in the emulsifying of fats and in counteracting their rancidity. Also involved in the formation of hematin and globulin in the red corpuscles of the blood. The following foods are good sources of Hydroxy proline: carrots, beets, lettuce, radishes, dandelions, turnips, cucumbers, almonds (unsalted), coconut, avocado, olives, apricots, cherries, Brazil nuts, figs, raisins, grapes (particularly Concords), orange, pineapple.

10. lodogorgoic Acid - composition: carbon 25%, hydrogen 2%, oxygen 11%, nitrogen 3%, iodine 59%. Molecular weight 433. Functions: involved in the functions of all the glands in the body, but particularly those of the thyroid, pituitary, adrenals, and lymph glands. The following foods contain Iodogorgoic Acid elements: dulse, kelp, sea lettuce, carrots, celery, lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, pineapple.

11. Isoleucine - composition: carbon 55%, hydrogen 10%, oxygen 24%, nitrogen, 11%. Molecular weight 131.
Functions: involved in the regulation of the thymus gland during childhood and adolescence, and the pituitary and spleen during adolescence and maturity, particularly in relation to growth and the regeneration of body tissues - muscle development and repair. Important factor in the regeneration of hemoglobin (red blood corpuscles). Helps the regulation of general metabolism. Therapeutic uses: anorexia nervosa, heavy exercises, hepatic failure, hyperammonia, hypercatabolic states, low birth weight infants, muscle weakness, renal failure, schizophrenia (B3 dependent type), sepsis, stress, surgery, uraemia, upper gastrointestinal bleeding. The following foods contain Isoleucine elements: chia, chlorella, spirulina, Moringa leaves, all nuts, except peanuts, cashews and chestnuts, bananas, avocados, olives, carrots, apricots, pistachios, ripe papaya, coconut, sunflower seeds, almonds, corn, lentils, soybeans, spinach, garlic, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, potatoes, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, okra, cucumber, Brussels sprouts, peas, chickpeas, soy, kale, squash, and whole wheat.

12. Leucine - its composition and molecular weight are exactly like those of isoleucine. The difference is in the chain combination of the atoms which cause the Leucine amino acid to rotate the plane of polarization to the left (levorotatory) while those of the isoleucine cause it to rotate to the right (dextrorotatory). Functions: leucine has a counter-balancing influence on the functions of isoleucine aminos. This amino acid competes with aromatic amino acids for brain uptake, component of elastin and protein hormones (enkephalin), stimulates the production of endorphins, growth, lowers brain levels of serotonin and dopamine, promotes wound healing, reduces appetite, regulates muscle protein synthesis, stimulates insulin release, synthesis of leucopeptin - a lysosomal proteinase inhibitor of lipofuscin. Therapeutic uses: athletic endurance, biliary atresia, body builders, chronic pain, diabetes. fasting, fever below 35.5 deg. C, hepatitis, hypercatabolic states, hyperglycaemia, kidney failure, liver failure, low birth weight in infants, muscle weakness, pancreatic dysfunction, Parkinson’s disease with olivoponto cerebellar athrophy, stress, surgery, uraemia, wound healing. The foods containing leucine elements are the same as those containing isoleucine elements.

13. Lysine - composition: carbon 49%, hydrogen 10%, oxygen 22%, nitrogen 19%. Molecular weight 146.
involved in the functions of the liver and gall bladder, particularly in the metabolism of fats. Essential in the regulation and group participation of the pineal gland, the mammary glands, corpus luteum, oophoron and ovaries (female organs). This amino acid has aminogenic, antiviral activity, binds apoprotein (a), increases intestinal absorption of calcium and promotes bone growth. Lysine is also active in the prevention of degeneration of body cells and tissues. Therapeutic uses: angina, athletic performance, atheroma, Bell’s palsy, cancer, conjunctivitis, cranial nerve pain (associated with herpes), herpes infection, infertility, lead toxicity, ligament damage, marasmus, Meniere’s disease, osteoporosis, stress, surgery, wound healing. Foods needed to supply Lysine are: chia, spirulina, Moringa leaves, avocados, carrots, apricots, mangos, apples, carrots, okra, cabbage, cauliflowers, Brussesls sprouts, broccoli, kale, beets, sweet potatoes, potatoes, garlic, cucumbers, celery, parsley, tomatoes, squash, spinach, mint, bananas, dandelion, turnip tops, green and ripe papaya, alfalfa, soy bean shoots (young, about 6 inches long), apples, apricots, pears, grapes, brewer’s yeast, mung bean sprouts, dried fruit (figs), brewer’s yeast, lentils, beans, peas, fenugreek seeds, cashew nuts, almonds, Brazil nuts, pecans, walnuts, tomato, carrot, or orange juice, and oat flakes.

14. Methionine - composition: carbon 40%, hydrogen 7.5%, oxygen 21.5%, nitrogen 9%, sulphur 22%. Molecular weight 149. An important constituent of the haemoglobin of the blood, of the tissues and of the serum in the system. Functions: involved in the functions of the spleen, the pancreas and the lymph glands. Antioxidant, detoxifies endogenous epinephrine, norepinephrine and serotonin, free radical scavenger, involved in the synthesis of choline, acetylcholine, adrenaline, antibodies, carnitine, and creatine phosphate, involved in transmethylation reactions, lipotropic activity, precursor to cysteine, taurine, prevents oncogenic activity through methylating DNA, required for nucleic acid protein, collagen, polyamine, phosphatidyl choline synthesis. Therapeutic uses: ageing, alcoholism, allergies, atherosclerosis, bladder irritation, burns, cancer, chemical sensitivity, detoxification procedures, elevated lipids, fatigue, gall stones, heroin addiction, histadelic schizophrenics, kidney failure, liver disease, Parkinson’s disease, pesticide exposure, radiation therapy, surgery, trauma. Foods supplying Methionine elements are: chia, chlorella, spirulina, Moringa leaves, avocado, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, broccoli, carrots, spinach, cauliflower (raw), sorrel, kale, squash, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, bananas, cucumber, potatoes, horseradish, chives, garlic, watercress, pineapple, apples, coconut, Brazil nuts, filberts, onions, peas, okra, beans, lentils, garlic, and peanuts.

15. Norleucine - another one of the Leucine group, with composition and molecular weight like that of isoleucine. Also known as glyco leucine. It is levorotatory, and helps to balance the functions and activities of the leucine group.
16. Phenylalanine - composition: carbon 65.5%, hydrogen 7%, oxygen 19%, nitrogen 8.5%. Molecular weight 165. Functions: involved in the processes of eliminating waste matter, both food waste and the used up cells and tissues in the body. Involved in the functions of the kidneys and bladder. Loses most of its efficacy in the presence of alcohol in the system. Therapeutic uses: agitation, alcohol withdrawal, appetite control, chronic pain, depression, kidney failure, memory loss, obesity, opiate withdrawal, poor libido. Foods supplying the necessary Phenylalanine elements are: chia, chlorella, spirulina, Moringa leaves, avocados, bananas, carrot, beet, cucumber, spinach, mint, parsley, okra, Brussels sprouts, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, potatoes, pineapple, coconut, apples, kale, broccoli, squash, garlic, cauliflowers, cabbage, broccoli, lentils, nuts, and soybeans.
17. Proline (*) - composition: carbon 52%, hydrogen 8%, oxygen 28%, nitrogen 12%. Molecular weight 115. Functions: involved in the activities of the white blood corpuscles or leucocytes. Proline gives rise to hydroxy proline, and prevents lipoprotein (a) from binding to vascular wall. It is also concerned in regulating the emulsifying of fats. Proline is a major amino acid of connective tissue proteins, collagen, elastin, and tooth enamel.
Therapeutic use:
angina, atheroma, cancer, hypercholesterolemia, hyper mobile joints, raised lipoprotein (a) level, soft tissue injuries. The following foods supply Proline elements: carrots, beets, lettuce, dandelions, turnips, cucumber, unsalted almonds, coconut, avocado, olives, apricots, cherries, Brazil nuts, figs, raisins, grapes, oranges, pineapple, spinach, soy beans, sesame seeds, and wheat germ.
18. Serine - composition: carbon 34%, hydrogen 7%, oxygen 46%, nitrogen 13%. Molecular weight 105. Functions: involved in the cleansing of tissues in the system, particularly those concerned with the mucous membrane, the lungs and the bronchial tubes - inefficient in the presence of nicotine. Constituent of phospholipids in the brain, involved in glycoprotein synthesis, phosphatidyl serine component of cell membrane, involved in the synthesis of pyrimidines, purine, creatine, porphyrin, glycine, sarcosine, choline, involved in the synthesis of fatty acid sheaths around nerve fibres, neuro inhibitor, precursor of ethanolamine, glycogenic amino acid, serine enhances the effects of opiates by increasing opiate binding. Therapeutic uses: behavioural disturbance, memory, multiple sclerosis, natural moisturizer, neuritis, neuropathy, pain relief, skin dryness (cosmetic agent), spinal injury.
The following foods contain Serine elements: chlorella, horseradish, radishes, leeks, garlic, onions, carrots, beets, celery, cucumber, mint, parsley, spinach, cabbage, alfalfa, papaya, apples, pineapple, and wheat germ.
19. Threonine - composition: carbon 48%, hydrogen 9%, oxygen 24%, nitrogen 19%. Molecular weight 142. Functions: active in the exchange of amino acid atoms in the body, establishing the balance between their chain structure and their respective functions. Threonine is a carrier for phosphate in phosphoproteins, copper transporter, essential precursor of glycine (neuro-inhibitor) and serine, immuno stimulant, involved in the synthesis of glycoproteins, lipotropic activity maintenance of connective tissue integrity precursor to the neurotransmitter glycine in the lower brain stem and retina. Therapeutic uses: ageing, detoxification reactions (via glycine), indigestion, liver disease, renal failure, spasticity spinal injury spinal pain, trauma, wound healing. Food elements in Threonine: chia, chlorella, spirulina, Moringa leaves, ripe papaya, carrots, bananas, alfalfa, most grains, avocados, kale, broccoli, spinach, cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, garlic, tomatoes, potatoes, sweet potatoes, kale, okra, cucumber, peas, raw brown rice, coconut, peanuts, wheat, and squash.
20. Tryptophan - composition: carbon 65%, hydrogen 6%, oxygen 15%, nitrogen 14%. Molecular weight 204. Basic substance in the generation of cells and tissues in the body, from the primary sex cells to the completed tissues. Functions: involved in the generation and functions of the gastric and pancreatic juices. Active in the efficiency of the optic system. Therapeutic uses: alcoholic aggression, AIDS, amphetamine abuse, anxiety, chronic pain relief, dental pain, depression, Down syndrome, fibromyalgia, histopenic schizophrenia, hypertension, insomnia, mania, migraine, mild depression, obsessive compulsive behaviour, oral contraceptive use, Parkinson’s disease, PMT, reduces risk of sudden infant death syndrome, regulates appetite, stress, sugar craving, suicidal behaviour, uraemia, viral induced nutrient deficiency disease. Foods necessary to maintain Tryptophan equilibrium: chia, chlorella, spirulina, moringa leaves, avocados, apples, bananas, blueberries, broccoli, cabbages, mushrooms, carrots, green peas, beets, celery, chickpeas, endive, dandelions, kale, broccoli, fennel, lima beans, string beans (raw), Brussels sprouts (raw), cauliflowers, chives, eggplant, garlic, spinach, mustard green, cucumber, spinach, alfalfa, turnips, lentils, asparagus, millet, onions, potatoes, oranges, pineapples, peach, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, strawberries, potatoes, sweet potatoes, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, uncooked red and brown rice, mung beans, coconut, fenugreek seeds, sunflower seeds, wheat, corn, barley, oats, walnuts, pistachio, cashews, almonds, chestnuts, and soybeans.

21. Tyrosine (*) - composition: carbon 59.5%, hydrogen 6%, oxygen 26.5%, nitrogen 8%. Molecular weight 181. Essential in the generation of red and white blood of corpuscles. Functions: involved in the formation and development of body cells and tissues. Active in the functions of the ingredient in the pigment cells of the hair. Therapeutic uses: adrenal exhaustion, alcohol withdrawal, Alzheimer’s diseases, brain fatigue, appetite control, codeine or amphetamine addition, depression, environmental stress, haemorrhage, hypertension, and hypotension - i.e., it normalizes blood pressure and hypothyroidism; it improves sympathetic tone, mental endurance, mental exhaustion, Parkinson’s disease, premenstrual tension, poor libido, restless legs, shock, smocking addition, weight loss, and ventricular fibrillation. Foods containing Tyrosine elements: chlorella, alfalfa, carrots, beets, cucumbers, lettuce, dandelions, parsnips, asparagus tips (raw), leeks, parsley, green peppers, spinach, watercress, almonds (raw, unsalted), strawberries, apricots, cherries, apples, pomegranates, watermelon, figs, almonds, and soy beans.

22. Thyroxine (*) - composition: carbon 23%, hydrogen 1.5%, oxygen 8%, nitrogen 2%, iodine 65.5%. Molecular weight 777. Strictly speaking, Thyroxineis not an amino acid, but one of the two major hormones secreted by the Thyroid Gland, and it is formed by the molecular addition of Iodine to the amino acid Tyrosine while the latter is bound to the protein Thyroglobulin. However, sometimes Thyroxine is listed as an amino acid. Thyroxine is involved in the activities of the thyroid, pituitary adrenals and orchic glands, helping to regulate the general metabolism and speed of reactions, both voluntary and involuntary. Foods containing Thyroxine elements are: dulse, kelp, sea lettuce, carrots, celery, lettuce, spinach, turnips, tomatoes, pineapple, almonds, and soybeans.

23. Valine - composition: carbon 51%, hydrogen 9.5%, oxygen 27.5%, nitrogen 12%. Molecular weight 117. Functions: involved in the functions of the corpus luteum, mammary glands and ovaries, and their corresponding gland-group participation. Valine competes with aromatic amino acids for brain uptake, reduces brain tryptophan levels, enhances immune functions of liver associated lymphocytes. Therapeutic uses: anorexia nervosa, body building, cancer, diabetes, exercise, hepatic coma, hepatitis, muscle weakness, sepsis. Foods containing Valine elements: chia, chlorella, spirulina, Moringa leaves, avocados, bananas, carrots, turnips, cucumbers, dandelions, almonds (raw, unsalted) lettuce, broccoli, kale, parsnips, squash (raw), sweet gourd, mint, celery, beets, coconut, parsley, okra, garlic, tomatoes, potatoes, sweet potatoes, spinach, cabbage, cauliflower, okra, squash, Brussels sprouts, apples, pomegranate, almonds, chick peas, lima beans, peas, mushrooms, nuts, and soy flour.
In order to clarify the chain combinations of atoms in the various amino acids, I am using as examples these three formulas of the Leucine group:

(Empirical formula: C6H1302N)

(Empirical formula: C6H1302N)

(Empirical formula: C6H1302N)

These three amino acids have the same empirical atom formula, but the manner in which they blend together alters their individual properties, activities and functions.
Although Histidine has long been thought important only for infants, recent studies have suggested that some Histidine may be required for adults. Arginine, sometime cited as being essential for children, is not recognized as such by the U.S. National Academy of Sciences. Tyrosine and Cystine, although considered “nonessential,” are to some degree able to be inter-converted with Methionine and Phenylalanine, respectively, thereby lowering the requirements of these amino acids. Of course, these changing data reflect the ongoing research in the field, where, as in all dynamic scientific fields, knowledge is continually updated and revised.
Myths, misconceptions and little known facts about amino acids
When the great majority of people hear the word protein (or amino acids) they instinctively think red meat, fish, poultry, eggs, milk, cheese, and other animal products. This isn’t surprising, as the overwhelming majority of people, especially in the so-called advanced countries, have been brainwashed into believing, incorrectly, that a ‘day without animal protein is a day quite deficient of this vital nutrient. The widespread misconception that animal-derived protein is different from, and superior to, plant-derived protein’ is pure fantasy. It is just one of the many myths devised and propagated by the meat and dairy industries and parroted by the so-called nutrition and health experts who are on their payroll. In order to debunk these kinds of myths and misconceptions, it is necessary to examine the nature and functions of the amino acids which compose all protein. In other words, the true scientific facts about proteins can only be learned by a thorough study of the amino acids that compose them. For example, protein is not built in our bodies by eating protein - it is built by the amino acids we obtain from the foods we normally eat. To be more scientifically accurate, the building block of protein are the amino acids which, in turn, consist of the correct percentage of oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, and carbon. As already shown in the above list of amino acids, Alanine, for example, is made of 40% carbon, 8% hydrogen, 36% oxygen, and 16% nitrogen. Also, every amino acid has a different molecular weight. We may correctly say that both the amino acids and proteins are molecules; obviously, the latter consists of larger molecules than the former. Most people believe in the myth that whenever they eat a portion of beef, pork, chicken, or other animal flesh, it will change into human protein in their bodies. This, of course, is nonsense - animal protein won’t ever become human protein!

As I have already said above (with the exception of four amino acids which also contain atoms of sulphur and iodine), amino acids consist of oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, and carbon atoms. This applies to both plant-derived and animal-derived amino acids. Proteins are not usable as complete molecules. The body must break them down into amino acids, which can be absorbed into the bloodstream. Once in the bloodstream, those amino acids needed for growth and repair are selected according to the needs of the individual cells and tissues. Proteins uniquely suited to the body are then constructed from these amino acids. When the selection is not exactly according to the body’s needs, the body can construct its own amino acids by a process called ‘transamination’. (Transamination is the process of transposing an amino group within a chemical compound, as well as the process of transferring an amino group from one compound to another.) During this process, the liver takes an ‘amino group’ from one amino acid and the acid group from another amino acid and makes the desired amino acid. But one amino acid cannot substitute for another, nor can the body construct necessary proteins unless the requisite amino acids or their components are available from dietary intake. In other words, without dietary intake the body cannot manufacturer the so-called ‘non-essential’ amino acids.

About 80 percent of an individual’s daily protein requirement is used to synthesize amino acids the body can make itself. The remaining 20 percent of the daily requirement is for essential amino acids. The body’s protein needs, then, are divided into the need for dietary nitrogen to enable the body to make its own proteins and amino acids and the need for preformed ‘essential’ amino acids. Of course, foods supplying the ‘essential’ amino acids could be consumed in quantities large enough to supply all our dietary needs, but this could be both costly and wasteful. Also, the nitrogen atoms in the amino acids would be stripped from their molecules, and the remainder burned for energy, stored as fat, or simply discarded.
Here, it is important to understand that no protein, nor any of the amino acids that make it up, get in the liver directly from the food assimilated by the intestine. To be more precise, the body cannot use or assimilate protein in its original state as eaten, until it is firstly broken down into its original amino acids. But this process isn’t enough; that is, the amino acids need to be further broken down into their original atoms. These elements are then transported to the liver by the blood, and reach it as individual atoms and molecules. The liver must reassemble and re-convert these into new amino acids and proteins as they are needed in order to regenerate and replenish the body’s consumed cells and tissues. The liver of all mammals (including us) does most of this vital reconstructive work. To further clarify this matter, what the liver receives from the intestines are not amino acids or proteins as such, but atoms of oxygen, carbon, nitrogen, and hydrogen.
As for the myth that animal-based amino acids are different from their plant-based counterparts, it can be easily debunked. However, this can best be done at an atomic level, not a molecular one. Here, by ‘atomic level examination’ I mean the examination of the atoms of carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and hydrogen which constitute all amino acids. Let’s take the “essential” amino acid Tryptophan, for example. Tryptophan, which is a component of both animal protein and plant protein, consists exactly of the same percentage of hydrogen (6%), nitrogen (14%), oxygen (15%), and carbon 65%; also, they have the same molecular weight: 204. In other words, as shown in the above list of amino acids, Tryptophan can be found in, for example, carrots, beets, celery, endive, fennel, soy beans, and alfalfa; but it is also a constituent of, for example, cottage cheese, beef, and fish. Here, for the sake of accuracy, I should say that there is no difference between animal-derived amino acids and plant-derived ones, but only when these are not processed, refined, and/or cooked! For example, the raw, unprocessed flesh of wild pheasants, organically grown fresh almonds, and raw, unprocessed free-range eggs, all contain the amino acid Isoleucine. Going by our list of amino acids, isoleucine is composed of 55% carbon, 10% hydrogen, 24% oxygen, and 11% nitrogen. Therefore, we can rightly say that in normal conditions there is no difference between animal-derived and plant-derived amino acids. But, if we fry the eggs and roast the pheasants, for example, the similarity between the amino acids of either of the two animal-derived products and the plant-based one, will no longer be the same. Here, it is important to realize that everything written above, about both animal and plant proteins, refers exclusively the protein found in raw and unprocessed foods! As we shall see in a later chapter, cooking, canning, or otherwise processing any kind of foods can alter their molecular and atomic structure, as well as reducing their properties and their amount of nutrients.
People who - despite overwhelming anatomical and physiological evidence to the contrary - regard themselves as carnivores/omnivores, will maintain that animal-derived amino acids and proteins are far superior to their plant-derived counterparts. For example, they will talk about “high quality” animal proteins and “low quality” plant proteins; or “first class” animal proteins and “second class” plant proteins. As we have already seen above, all proteins consist of amino acids, which in turn are all made of a variable percentage of the same atoms already mentioned above. Because of their ignorance and/or their will to distort facts and truths, they never mention that all amino acids and proteins have a plant origin; and furthermore, are composed of water, air, soil, and sunlight converted by plants and certain protozoa into living substance. Even the non-essential amino acids manufactured in the body, are indirectly linked to the so-called essential amino acids which, in turn derive either directly or indirectly from plants. As U.S. nutrition and health guru, Harvey Diamond wrote in his book Fit For Life: “All nutritive material is formed in the plant kingdom; animals have the power to appropriate but never to form or create protein’s source. Plants can synthesize amino acids from air, earth, and water, but animals, including humans, are dependent on plant protein - either directly, by eating the plant, or indirectly, by eating an animal that has eaten the plant. There are no “essential” amino acids in flesh that the animal did not derive from plants, and that humans cannot also derive from plants”.
The widespread myth that humans were meant to ingest animal-derived protein on a daily basis, is relegated to the rubbish bin of health science by the irrefutable fact that the strongest and longest-living animals on this planet are those who feed exclusively on a vegan diet. These animals owe their superior strength and endurance to the fact that they build them from the abundance of amino acids they consume eating plant life! As already mentioned in an earlier chapter, the silverback gorilla, for example, thrive on a primarily on a daily diet of a large variety of fresh fruits, leaves, plant-shoots, seeds, and nuts. Apart from the orang-utan, this gorilla is physiologically and, in many ways, anatomically very similar to humans. Furthermore, countless nutrition and health studies and statistics have clearly shown that the healthiest and oldest people in the world are those who have been living on vegan or near-vegan daily diets. (More will be said on this subject in the next chapter.)
As I have already said earlier in this book, through the process of evolution, Nature gave all living things the necessary means of sustenance in just the right variety and amount; but, unfortunately, humans have abused and misused these means, thus inviting all kinds of illnesses and substantially shortening their life-spans. Returning to the amino acid topic, most misinformed and misguided people - especially in the so-called advanced Western countries - live in constant fear that their bodies may run short of amino acids and protein. In fact, whenever they think about protein the great majority of people envisage only animal protein. Of course, this irrational fear is constantly fuelled by the world’s meat and dairy industries. But, as I said above, evolution has given animal and human bodies the most amazing power of manufacturing regularly and proficiently all the necessary amino acids, thus creating a so-called ‘amino acid pool’. The amino acid poll is a reality, and the only reason its existence has been questioned, is because it doesn’t conform with the medical establishment traditional view of protein and its amino acids constituents. Strong evidence for the ‘amino-acid-pool’ theory has been presented by the late Prof. Arthur C. Guyton in his authoritative medical book Physiology of the Human Body, as well as by Dr. Henry Brown, Dr. Edmund S. Nasset, and other authorities in the fields of physiology and medical biochemistry. The following paragraph clearly shows how this “pool” operates.
Here, it should be understood that no ‘complete protein’, as such, can be digested and assimilated by the body as a protein, whether it is animal-derived or plant-derived. No. It has to be split into amino acids first, and then into the atoms which compose them. This liquid amino acid atoms are transported to the liver by osmosis by the blood in the hepatic vein which connects the intestine to that organ. It is the task of the liver to reclassify the atomic elements and recombine them into the kind and type of amino acids and proteins needed by the cells and tissues of the body for their regeneration or substitution. Our bodies obtain all the different amino acids circulating in the blood and lymphatic systems from the digestion of various food in our diet and from the recycle of proteinaceous wastes. When the body needs amino acids, they are appropriated from the blood or lymph. This continuous circulating available supply of amino acids is known as the ‘amino acid pool’ . The liver and cells are continually depositing and withdrawing amino acids, depending on the concentration of amino acids in the blood. Whenever the number of amino acids reaches a high enough level, the liver absorbs and stores them until they are needed. When the amino acid level in the blood falls, because of withdrawals by the cells, the liver deposits some of the stored amino acids back into circulation. The cells also have the capacity to store amino acids. If the amino acid content of the blood falls, or if some other cells require specific amino acids, the cells are able to release their stored amino acids into circulation. Since most of the body’s cells synthesize more protein than is necessary to support the life of the cell, the cells can reconvert their proteins into amino acids and make deposits into the amino acid pool. This pool of amino acids is critical to understanding why the widespread misconception that ‘complete’ animal-derived proteins are necessary to our daily diet is sheer nonsense! In other words, the existence and working of this amino acid pool tell us why “complete” proteins - be they animal or plant-derived - are not necessary in our daily diet.
Unfortunately for our general health, the meat and dairy industries - aided and abetted by so-called nutritional experts (some of whom having Dr. Sc., Ph. D., MA, etc., after their names) have been trying very hard for many decades to distort or omit altogether truths and facts about nutrition and health. This is why we have been brainwashed into believing that animal-based amino acids (protein) is “first quality” or “high quality”. In fact, animal-derived protein is very much ‘second hand’ protein. (And we all know that a second hand product can never be quite as good as a new one!) It may have escaped some people’s attention, but cows and other herbivores, for example, get their first hand and first class amino acids (protein) from plant sources, not from the flesh of other animals, like carnivores and omnivores do! Also, as has been explained above - on an atomic level, all amino acids are made primarily of hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, and carbon. Needless to say, these four atomic elements are exactly the same, no matter whether they come from animal-based or plant-based amino acids, of which protein consists! Furthermore, we now know that through enormously complex metabolic systems, the human body can derive all the essential amino acids from the natural variety of plant proteins that we encounter every day. This means that we don’t need to eat higher quantities of plant protein and/or fastidiously plan all our meals. Unfortunately, the mythical concept of protein quality has greatly obscured this very important fact.
If we were to believe in the ongoing propaganda coming from the meat and dairy industries and the many “experts” who are on their payroll, food proteins and amino acids of the highest quality are those that provide, upon digestion, the right kinds and amounts of amino acids needed to efficiently synthesize our new tissue proteins. This is what that word “quality” really means: it is the ability of food proteins to provide the right kinds and amounts of amino acids to make new proteins. Taken out of context, these definitions are quite correct. What isn’t correct, however, is the implication that these amino acids and proteins, to which these “experts” refer, are animal-derived ones. They also tell us that the food that most efficiently provides the building blocks for our replacement proteins is human flesh. This is because its protein has just the right amount of the needed amino acids. As eating human flesh is out of the question, the second “best” choice is eating other animals. On this subject, nutritional biochemist, T. Colin Campbell, wrote in his excellent book The China Study: The proteins of other animals are very similar to our proteins because they mostly have the right amounts of each of the needed amino acids. These proteins can be used very efficiently and therefore are called “high quality.” Among animal foods, the proteins of milk and eggs represent the best amino acid matches for our proteins, and thus are considered the highest quality. While the “lower quality” plant proteins may be lacking in one or more of the essential amino acids, as a group they do contain all of them. The concept of quality really means the efficiency with which food proteins are used to promote growth. This would be well and good if the greatest efficiency equalled the greatest health, but it doesn’t, and that’s why the terms ‘efficiency’ and ‘quality’ are misleading. While the “lower quality” plant proteins may be lacking in one or more of the essential amino acids, as a group they do contain all of them. The concept of quality really means the efficiency with which food proteins are used to promote growth. Obviously, it would be great if the greatest efficiency matched the greatest health, but it does not! This is why the terms ‘efficiency’ and ‘high quality’ are misleading”. Here, what Dr Campbell is saying is that the quality of the protein found in a certain food shouldn’t be determined by seeing how fast and large on a regular basis animals and humans would grow while consuming it. On the contrary, it should be ascertained by how healthy these animals and people grow on it. There is no doubt that (apart from doing body-building exercise on a regular basis) consuming a daily large amount of animal-derived protein is the fastest way to build a strong extra-muscular body. Unfortunately, it can also the surest and fastest way to end up in hospital or six feet under! (More will be said on this topic in the next chapter.)
A very important thing to consider when talking about protein and amino acids is the difference between cooked, and otherwise processed protein, and raw unprocessed protein. As we shall see in a future chapter, the process of cooking at least partially destroys amino acids, and this makes animal proteins anything but ‘high quality’! Certainly, raw, unprocessed meat, fish, fowl, eggs, and milk can be said to contain high efficiency proteins. However, by the time these foods are made palatable enough to eat, their molecular protein content has been changed into a largely unusable inorganic state! This happens, not only with animal proteins, but also with plant proteins. A fresh, organically grown raw apple, for example, contains many vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and even amino acids. However, if the same apple is cooked, all its enzymes are destroyed, and the same happens to most of its vitamin, mineral, and amino acid content. Yes, although in a very small quantity, raw apples with skin contain twenty-one amino acids, including nine essential ones.
As already mentioned above, “essential” amino acids are those our bodies cannot manufacture and, therefore, must be obtained from the food we eat. However, the truth is that all amino acids are essential in one way or another otherwise they wouldn’t exist. Having established all that, all proteins are not equal. That is, some are considered to be “complete” proteins, while others are labelled “incomplete” ones. The former types supply all the “essential” amino acids, whereas the latter do not. Most of the so-called complete proteins come from animal sources as, for example: meat, fish, eggs, and dairy products; while most of the incomplete proteins come from plant sources such as, for example: many fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, and beans. Incidentally, refined fats, sugars, oils, and butters, for example, are totally devoid of proteins. The little-known truth, however, is that Nature intended humans, and most other mammals (especially, primates) to thrive either on ‘incomplete’, raw plant-derived proteins, or to consume two or more of them together. Here, it is important to understand that most mammals, including people, do not consume daily diets based on complete proteins. People who don’t eat foods rich of either animal or plant-based proteins are very unlikely to become ‘body builders’, for example, but - as much research in the fields of nutrition and health has amply proved - they normally live a much healthier and longer life than the great majority of people whose daily diets are unnaturally rich in cooked animal-derived foods!
The big misconception that humans need a daily supply of animal-based protein in order to grow and stay healthy is a very ‘die-hard’ one - this, despite all the compelling research and evidence to the contrary. To be sure, animal protein promotes growth, but so does plant protein. However, while the former has been linked to almost all kinds of degenerative illnesses, the latter is by far the healthiest type of protein. Yes, animal-derived protein promotes growth and muscle, especially in young people, but it certainly does not promote optimum health and longevity! The overwhelming majority of people worldwide don’t even know that plants can supply first-class and first-hand proteins and amino acids, let alone being aware that a plant-based diet could substantially prolong their lives! In fact, far from the three score years and ten belief (barring accidental deaths), the average human lifespan, set out by Nature, is not about 70 years, but 120-140 years!
The carefully avoided nutritional truth is that Nature never meant humans to feed on animal-derived protein, as our present anatomical and physiological characteristics show most conclusively. (Likewise, Nature never intended humans to drink the milk of other mammals!) Much fuss is made about the fact that many plant-based foods don’t always contain all the necessary amino acids. This is true, of course; but what is important are not the amino acids as a whole, but their atomic components. And, as already explained above, these components are the same in all amino acids, whether these are animal or plant-derived, and essential, conditionally-essential, or non-essential. To put it another way, as long as our body cells obtain their daily quota of the correct combination of hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon, it doesn’t matter from which amino acids or proteins it comes. We are ‘primates’, and as such, our biological adaptation is that of the orang-utan, gorilla, and other primates. This means we were meant to feed on raw fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, sprouted whole grains, and tubers. I, for one, have no doubt that a daily combination of these nutrients will give us all the “necessary” amino acids we need to stay healthy and live longer! (In the next chapter we will see how unhealthy a high animal protein diet can be.)
A Few Words Of Conclusion
The amino acid subject, I dealt with above, isn’t an easy one; however, I hope the reader has learned the following truths and facts from it:
  1. Nature never intended pre-historical, historical, and contemporary humans to feed on animal-derived nutrients, but only on plant-derived ones.

  2.  Nature made no provision for any of the members of the Animal Kingdom to cook or treat in any way their foods, but to eat them raw and unprocessed.

  3.  In order to properly understand the nature and roles of protein we must first learn as much as we can about their amino acid content.

  4.  Cooking foods will coagulate or destroy at least 50% of their amino acid content.

  5.  The ultimate nutritional value of all protein foods lies in their amino acids composition, not in their proteins. That is, it is the amino acids that are the essential components. This is why protein must be first digested, then split into its amino acids, which in turn are split into their atomic components.

  6.  When it comes to amino acids, the great majority of people immediately think of meat, fish, milk , and eggs; this, without realizing that all the members of the Plant Kingdom contain the same types of amino acids as do all animal-based foods.

  7.  Meat and other animal-derived amino acids would have to be eaten raw for any potential usage of amino acids.

  8.  Both plant-derived and animal-derived nutrients consist of the same atomic elements provided, of course, these nutrients have not been processed in any way and/or cooked.

  9.  Almost all principal amino acids are very important, not only the so-called ‘essential’ ones.

  10.  The usable amino acid content found in plant life is far in excess of that found in flesh foods.

  11.  No doubt, all that talk about the vital importance of having to eat foods that contain all the “essential” amino acids at every meal (or, at least, in one day) is just another propagandistic expedient excogitated by the meat and dairy industries and the so-called nutrition and health ‘experts’ who work for them. In fact, if their propaganda corresponded to scientific reality, many people and other members of the Mammalian Class would either be dead or in very poor health indeed!

  12.  The great majority of people, including those who should know better, believe in the myth that animal-derived proteins are “high quality”, while plant-derived proteins are “low quality”. In fact, the former are very much ‘third hand’ proteins (and so are their amino acid constituents) for the simple reason that they come from flesh-eating animals who obtain from vegetarian animals who, in turn, get them ‘first hand’ from their plant-derived diets!

  13.  Another unsung truth is that there are no ‘essential’ amino acids and proteins that don’t have a plant-derived origin. That is, even the amino acids manufactured by our bodies, couldn’t exist without the amino acids we obtain from our food on a daily basis. In a nutshell, there are no ‘essential’ amino acids in meat and other animal-based nutrients that both people and animals cannot also derive from plants. Come to think of it, the whole of the Animal Kingdom could never have existed without the Plant Kingdom!

Finally, those who may be  worrying themselves sick about not getting their daily nutritional quota of “complete” protein and “essential” amino acids, may wish to relieve their anxiety by taking into consideration the following main three facts: 
  1. Once in the bloodstream, the amino acids needed for growth and repair are selected according to the needs of the individual cells and tissues; when this selection is not exactly in accordance with the body’s needs, the body can construct its own amino acids.

  2. Certainly, we don’t need near as much protein as we have been brainwashed into believing. In any case, our bodies can recycle about 70% of their proteinaceous waste.

  3. Most importantly, the evolutionary process gave humans (and possibly other mammals) a most remarkable mechanism to make sure that something as important as protein is manufactured regularly and most proficiently. Here, I am referring to the amino acid “pool”. As we have seen above, whenever the body needs amino acids they are readily available from the blood and lymphatic system. Figuratively speaking, this “pool” is like a bank that is never closed.

These days, more and more medical anthropologists and biologists, biochemists, and other health scientists are well aware of the above truths and facts, and some of them have even written well-documented articles and books on this very important topic. However, as the food, pharmaceutical, and medical industries detest truths about nutrition, health and related topics, the overwhelming majority of people are treated like mushrooms; that is, they are kept in the dark and fed only  bul....! I, for one, have no doubt that as soon as people become aware of the vital importance of a healthy diet and lifestyle  they will be able to free themselves from what American Dr Gabriel Cousens (one of the world’s top experts on diabetes) refers to as the Culture of Death!
Link To The Next Chapter
Chapter 5: Truths And Facts About Proteins


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