A Correct Diet Shall Include Animal Protein of High Biological Value

Therefore, A Correct Diet Shall Include Animal Protein of High Biological Value

This is a sentence taken from a textbook I picked up that I fell in love with after reading into it somewhere–perhaps PubMed or at the publisher’s site, where they allowed to read a small part of a chapter.

Medical Biochemistry

Medical Biochemistry

It is originally written in Spanish and translated to English, published in 2017. Why do I think that non-American text books are always better than American?… my be my imagination… In any case, I started reading the book and have experienced about one aha moment per 5 minutes. The title sentence to the article is most certainly a provocative last sentence of a section about proteins (page 47 for those inclined to find it). Here is the full quote:

The main function of proteins is structural, a role that cannot be replaced by any other components of the diet.

Within the existing amino acids, eight (phenylalanine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine) cannot be synthesized by humans. These amino acids are designated essential or indispensable and must be necessarily supplied by protein present in foods…

From a nutritional point of view, the quality or “biological value” of dietary proteins depends on their content of essential amino acids. Animal proteins (from red and white meats, milk, and eggs) are generally of higher biological value than those from plants. Therefore, a correct diet shall include animal protein of high biological value. (emphasis by me)

This captivated me since about 2 weeks ago I published an article on a blog where I am a scientist blogger about proteins and came to the same conclusion, going so far as to calculating the biological value of several foods to see what would have the highest biological value. I used the most common foods that we would pick but no doubt it could be extended to see what we really should eat, by calculating the biological value for a lot of foods.

biological value of some foods

biological value of some foods

I encircled with red the biologically essential values, which are calculated by adding up all the essential amino acids***: Histidine, Methionine, Valine, Leucine, Lycine, Isoleucine, Phenylalanine, Tryptophan, and Threonine  and dividing its sum by the sum of all of the nonessential amino acids in the food: Alaline, Arginine, Asparagine, Aspartate, Cysteine, Glutamate, Glutamine, Glycine, Proline, Serine, and Tyrosine. ***Note that some essential amino acids can be synthesized by the human body so this list contains all essentials whereas the quote above contains only 8, which we cannot synthesize.*** You can find the amino acid content of most foods in the USDA database when you click on “full report (all nutrients)” after your food selection. Here is an example for porterhouse steak, scroll to the bottom where the amino acids are listed and write them out one by one–yes, it is painfully tedious.

However, the outcome of this research is very important: it allows you to see what foods to eat and what not to eat.

Chemical Composition of Human Tissues

This is an important section–here I provide a cell phone photo of a paperback, so not very good quality, but you can see some important points.

body macronutrient ratios

body macronutrient ratios

The importance of this table is that while we are told left and right to stuff our faces with carbohydrates, our body doesn’t contain carbs much–only a bit of glucose in our muscles and blood and a bit of glycogen in the liver. Yet food elements we are told to not eat, such as fat and cholesterol, occupy a huge portion of our brain, and good portion of the liver and muscles. Proteins occupy the most of everything other than water and before you yell that bone marrow is lipids: nope. Bone marrow is where we make our red blood cells. It is not lipids.

So then, since proteins make up the biggest part in our body (more than calcium in our bones) other than water, we really should be spending much time figuring out what proteins we are going to eat. As I have shown in the table above, the quote is correct: we need to focus on animal products and not vegetables.

Elements of the Human Body and Their Relative Abundance

And finally, now about the general mineral levels in our body. This is an important table because we have no idea how much sodium, for example, our body contains all the time. So when the USDA recommends to reduce our daily salt consumption, what will that do to our body? Do we store salt anywhere and how much? How important is salt anyway? I think this table provides a pretty good demonstration of how important these minerals are–and if they are that important.

body mineral levels

body mineral levels

Thus you can calculate that since sodium represents 0.20% of our weight, an average 150 lbs person contains ~0.3 lbs or 5.33 oz sodium. Sodium is 40% of salt, therefore the total salt is 13.325 oz, or about 0.83 lbs salt. That is close to 1 pound salt in the body of a 150 lbs person. That’s a LOT of salt. So two points can be made here:

  1. Reducing or increasing our salt a bit a day should not make much of a difference, provided we don’t let our salt storage run out
  2. Salt must be extremely important for us if we carry almost a pound of it around in our body, 1/5th the amount of calcium, something our bones are made of!

At the same time, should you ever supplement with Zink or Selenium? Nah.. they are trace. This book is really helping me see the human body in a very interesting way. I can certainly see that the individual parts of our body are much more important than the sum.

My Most Controversial Conclusion Ever

The vegan and the vegetarian diets are not sufficient for a human to remain healthy.

We can argue about ethics, climate change, gas emission by the cows, the hormones and antibiotics that are given to them to sustain some semblance of their lives, given how they are fed the wrong food and are cramped up into tiny quarters. All that is happening to them in order to allow for huge fields for the wasted food stuff growing, such as corn and soy, whose nutrition is not biologically valuable enough to sustain our lives.

Comments are welcome, as always, and are monitored for appropriateness.


About Angela A Stanton, Ph.D.

Angela A Stanton, PhD, is a Neuroeconomist focusing on chronic pain--migraine in particular--physiology, electrolyte homeostasis, nutrition, and genetics. She lives in Southern California. Her current research is focused on migraine cause, prevention, and treatment without the use of medicine. As a forever migraineur from childhood, her discovery was helped by experimenting on herself. She found the cause of migraine to be at the ionic level, associated with disruption of the electrolyte homeostasis, resulting from genetic variations of all voltage dependent channels, gates, and pumps (chanelopathy) that modulate electrolyte mineral density and voltage in the brain. In addition, insulin and glucose transporters, and several other variants, such as MTHFR variants of B vitamin methylation process and many others are different in the case of a migraineur from the general population. Migraineurs are glucose sensitive (carbohydrate intolerant) and should avoid eating carbs as much as possible. She is working on her hypothesis that migraine is a metabolic disease. As a result of the success of the first edition of her book and her helping over 5000 migraineurs successfully prevent their migraines world wide, all ages and both genders, and all types of migraines, she published the 2nd (extended) edition of her migraine book "Fighting The Migraine Epidemic: Complete Guide: How To Treat & Prevent Migraines Without Medications". The 2nd edition is the “holy grail” of migraine cause, development, and prevention, incorporating all there is to know. It includes a long section for medical and research professionals. The book is full of academic citations (over 800) to authenticate the statements she makes to make it easy to follow up by those interested and to spark further research interest. It is a "Complete Guide", published on September 29, 2017. Dr. Stanton received her BSc at UCLA in Mathematics, MBA at UCR, MS in Management Science and Engineering at Stanford University, PhD in Economics with dissertation in neuroscience (culminating in Neuroeconomics) at Claremont Graduate University, fMRI certification at Harvard University Medical School at the Martinos Center for Neuroimaging for experimenting with neurotransmitters on human volunteers, certification in LCHF/ketogenic diet from NN (Nutrition Network), certification in physiology (UPEN via Coursea), Nutrition (Harvard Shool of Public Health) and functional medicine studies. Dr. Stanton is an avid sports fan, currently power weight lifting and kickboxing. For relaxation (yeah.. about a half minute each day), she paints and photographs and loves to spend time with her family of husband of 45 years, 2 sons and their wives, and 2 granddaughters. Follow her on Twitter at: @MigraineBook, LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelaastantonphd/ and facebook at https://www.facebook.com/DrAngelaAStanton/
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12 Responses to A Correct Diet Shall Include Animal Protein of High Biological Value

    • I agree to feeding the virus (it doesn’t eat anyway!) and starving the bacteria (it wants to eat! particularly glucose!). That’s how far I read it in the quick, so i am sure the article is just detailing why. Totally agree 100%. Grammas’ are very often right. 🙂


    • chris c says:

      Oh that’s interesting. I wonder if this could be fined down further, maybe different bacteria and different viruses have different fuel sources.like most cancers metabolise only glucose but some can also use ketones and glutamine etc.

      Update on my semi-amputated thumb – the cut mostly healed but did eventually get slightly infected. I noticed my immune system seemed to be working against it in waves, maybe blood glucose was affecting its efficiency. On my original high carb diet I would have needed antibiotics or at least ointment.

      Low carb/keto people can both starve and feed by not eating for long periods between meals, I wonder if that would be the best of both worlds.


      • I found Chris that everything heals much faster on keto–I am carnivore now but in ketosis all the time. I get easily bruised (that too improved by the way) and it used to take a week to recover from something causing a bruise. Now it is 2-3 days and it is gone. I noticed that the day of fasting–when I was bruised last week by something falling on my arm–I completely got rid of the bruise in that 1 day. That is autophagy in action.


  1. Roald Michel says:

    Any thoughts on Jillian Michaels’ statement that Keto diet is bad?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah.. she never read new and updated science. She must never have read that fetuses (including her), are in ketosis in the uterus (there is ketones in the placenta and it is an essential building block of the brain to give its structure and function), infants are in ketosis at birth, babies are in ketosis all through breast feeding (except during the actual time of eating), and every night through till they turn 10+… I suppose she is from another planet and she must not have been a normal child?!

      On the other hand: ignore her. She is tooting the industry horn. I wonder who is financing her.


  2. chris c says:

    When I saw the quote I thought

    “She’s found an old book from a century ago!”

    Nice to see not all current information is controlled by the vegans/Seventh Day Adventists. More proof that in the battle between science and religion, religion isn’t having it all its own way.

    Liked by 1 person

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