What is Protein? Breaking Down the Basics of a Well-Known Nutrient

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We know we need protein, but do we know why we need it? Get to know this nutrient and everything it does for us!

What is protein? Do I really need it? How much? What does a monkey look like if he doesn't get enough protein? These questions are all answered in a fun video for all our Sunwarriors out there. What is Protein is a fairly short (4:49) whiteboard animation featuring protein and what sets Sunwarrior apart from the rest. Watch mesmerizing hand-drawn characters come to life before your eyes. We're excited to share it. 

Protein is the most abundant molecule, apart from water, in our bodies. We always think of muscle when we talk about protein or about their components, amino acids, but these essential little building blocks are found in every cell and tissue throughout the body.

beans_jars_dry_healthy_calcium_protein_picProtein facilitates the digestion and absorption of nutrients. It acts as a cell's hands to grab and carry those nutrients into their interiors. And it removes waste and toxins. Protein combines with vitamins and minerals to do even more: move oxygen from the lungs and to cells that desperately need it to survive, act as antioxidants (cleaning up free radicals that do cellular damage and contribute to cancer and aging), and aid the immune system in recognizing and removing threats to our health and wellness. It even goes into hormones our bodies use to balance and regulate hundreds of systems and functions, from blood sugar to emotions.

This nutrient is able to be such an extremely versatile molecule thanks to what goes into it and how it's made. The body synthesizes proteins from amino acids, forming them into long chains. The chains can then twist and fold into unique shapes with practically endless possibilities and combinations in form and function. The bonds in these chains make protein very strong, flexible, and elastic, like a spring, perfect for both muscles and enzymes that need to move, shift, and react.

Proteins do have a weakness though. Their kryptonite? Heat. To be fair, it has two kryptonites: heat and extreme pH. These break the bonds that hold the twists and folds together, destroying any of the abilities that protein might have once held. Many of the enzymes we eat in whole foods help break down other proteins during digestion and also make many vitamins and minerals easier to absorb, but cooking can remove these benefits. Heat can also create cross bonding between proteins where denatured chains randomly link to other chains. These cross bound proteins are harder to digest and put to use, so many of the amino acids are lost, discarded as waste.

smoothie_cashew_banana_sunwarrior_protein_breakfast_shake_healthy_yummy_picThere are other problems with the protein we eat. Some of these amino acids can be made by the body, but some must come from diet. Since the body doesn't store amino acids, we do need a daily supply, but too much can be harmful. Excessive protein bogs down digestion, can supply way more calories than we need, and does harm to the liver and kidneys. Too little is also a problem, making us weak and more susceptible to disease and illness.

Sunwarrior strives to provide a clean, healthy amount of quality protein with a balanced amino acid profile, not too much, not too little. This protein is also raw, undamaged by heat, and ready for maximum absorption. Sunwarrior can be easily added to vegan protein smoothies for the best plant-based amino acids followed by amazing performance and recovery, without the downsides of bloating, gas, gluten, denatured proteins, allergens, or phytoestrogens that can be found in whey, casein, and soy. Take a look at Warrior Blend, Sunwarrior Classic, and Classic Plus today and discover the difference for yourself.​

Claims on this site have not been evaluated by the FDA. Information on this site is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Sunwarrior’s awesome expert writers do not replace doctors and don’t always cite studies, so do your research, as is wise. Seek the advice of a medical professional before making any changes to your lifestyle or diet.

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  • Raw Warrior has kept me alive and healthy. I had a TBI in 12-09. vertigo made it impossible to eat. no appetite for the last 6 years. I lived on this..and still do...every day. I now can eat veggies and fruits but this is my mainstay. I mix it with raw milk or organic whole milk. I am 62 years old now and much healthier than I was even before the accident. so thankful for this wonderful product. I will use it daily for the rest of my life.

  • hey nice Info

    One question, how can sunwarrior help me to loose some weight, for me is been kind of difficult to continue loosing weight...

    thanks for helping

  • Very cool video!

  • Great article, exactly what I needed.

  • Eager to try Sunwarrior!

  • Very clever video. Will definitely have to try Sunwarrior :)

  • Since I am taking Sunwarrior Protein Warrior blend I feel less bloated. Other vegan proteins simply won't leave you satisfied and are not as digestible as Sunwarrior's.

  • I love the whole drawing with the story, it kept my attention and was educational. I ordered a sample pack and love it. Looking forward to my first order and have already been spreading the word. I have health issues and have tried many. (MANY) different protein powders that taste like chalk or worse. The taset was great! I tried the ormus greens powder with a spoon and it had a sweet taste to it. Very happy to have found sunwarrior.com

  • Awesome! I've tried a few other vegan friendly proteins and excited to find a great one!

  • Thanks for the chance to win!! :)

  • I love how the bowl that I mix my protein in is so easy to clean. Just run fresh water in it and it rinses out in a flash. Unlike animal proteins, this product is easy to clean from your dishes. It makes one glad that the food one is ingesting is so clean and pure!

  • Hands down the best protein on the planet,,, Best value, as well!

  • Love the video, very informative and fun to watch! Sunwarrior is full of good for you ingredients and my body is thankful for it!

  • Good stuff! Thanks for posting. I love SunWarrior, but haven't gotten the chance to try Warrior Blend yet.

  • even with just water, the sunwarrior protein taste great

  • I love the quality of Sunwarrior products, especially in a time where we are just not sure what we are actually consuming when buying produce or other groceries due to GMO's, pesticides, ETC>>> Thank you Sunwarrior!

  • I'm a Sunwarrior fan! I use you protein and greens daily, and feel it to be an awesome product. The cartoon is entertaining, and contains great information... my only thought - it seems to kind of lower the quality of your products by promoting them through cartoons. It seems a little "dumbed-down".

  • Love all your videos.....I'm not sure if this is the one I viewed a while back when I switched over to plant based protein. But THANK YOU for the wealth of information!!!! I had always been in search of a "clean" protein but my sensitivity to Lactose always left me feeing bloated and icky. I really believe that plant based protein is the way to go. Before I found your products I was using Hemp protein which did not have as high content of protein. Now I mix it up. Love blending the protein with coconut milk....Yummy!!!

  • I'm intrigued... heading over to the website to check it out.

  • What a great video! Very informative and looks like a great product, can't wait to try it!

  • I've tried many other plant based protein mixes. Some were chalky and I later realized contained GMO. Many others are soy based and I don't do that anymore. I'm excited to try Sun Warrior!!

  • Awesome video! I love sun warrior!!!

  • Fabulous! I have a digestive disorder and need ways to get enough protein in my day. LOVE Sunwarrior!

  • Great vido! I love your products! SunWarrior Protein powered in Natural is a staple in our household!

  • Great video!! You guys are not only Sunwarriors, but you're true Health Warriors too! Love your work, keep it up (^_^)

  • I love SunWarrior! I have food allergies, allergies in general, and asthma brought on by said allergies. I even recently developed an allergy to wheat and gluten which I never had before. SunWarrior truly is my life saver! I thank God for it! It makes my life easier and helps me breathe easier! (literally!) I don't feel nauseous, dizzy, have headaches or feel tired whenever I drink a SunWarrior shake I prepare with coconut milk (yummy!) It helps being a vegan that much easier as well, since its not always an easy task but when effort is put into your health, the benefits are well worth it. Thank you SunWarrior! :-)

  • THANK YOU for this awesome product! I haven't felt this good since I was a kid!!! I feel energetic and happy again!! And I lost 7 pounds in less than a week EASILY! I'd have the chocolate protein powder with almond milk and a banana for breakfast and I'd feel light yet perfectly satisfied for about 14 hours. And then I'd easily have veggies with nuts for lunch. Unbelievable. I usually go for carbs. Or when I used to go low carb, I'd feel like crap. But SunWarrior is giving my body what it needs! I'm amazed at how good I feel and how quickly and easily I'm losing weight! I used to always feel tired (so I'd need tea, psuedoephadrine, etc.) -- and it was nearly impossible for me to lose weight. My brother says, "If the job's hard, you're using the wrong tool." So I spent years trying to find the right tools -- and here they are -- made by the sun -- via SUNWARRIOR products! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!

  • Great video!!

  • Hey SunWarrior, you say that your amazing protein powder is undamaged during heat exposure. Is this still true when delivered in 114 degree weather? Thanks

  • Excellent video! Very information and creative with the illustrations :)

  • Im going bananas for some of these tasty proteins after watching this video!! Ordering the warrior blend and dumping my whey isolate in the dumpster at this very moment. Gonna transform myself into a warrior!! Awesome Sun-Power!!

  • Pls help me Sun Warrior!!!!!! I am vegan, and have been searching and searching for a protein that wont upset my stomach and might.....actually have taste? I just dont seem to have any luck. My body would be honoured to try it, and I think......no, I know, I wont have to cross my fingers before I take it, this product is going to work for me! Thank you for all the education, I would never have even tried it, if I had not watched!

    • In reply to elaine's comment

      Elaine, send us an email at support@sunwarrior.com with a shipping address and what you'd like to try and we'll send you some samples. The vanilla and chocolate flavors are both very tasty. :)

    • In reply to admin's comment

      Hi, I'm from Canada and would love to try your samples before I place an order. I have to consider US$ versus CDN$ + Shipping and Handling...
      Thanks for your help...will send you an e-mail to support@sunwarrior.com
      With gratitude !

  • Sun Warrior Protein has given me my energy back without weight gain! I bring a thermos of this yummy protein mixed with seed milk whenever I am going out for the day or night to boast my energy when I begin to slump. My body tells me that Sun Warrior is good food. It is something I can count on to make me feel good and I am totally grateful to the people who have created this great product.

  • Hi. I commented on the video and got so excited about the contest that I posted about it on my blog (http://rawdorable.blogspot.com/2012/06/one-crazy-summer.html). I even included a sketch on my kids and I riding off into the sunset with our Sunwarrior products, inspired by the video. Thanks for the inspiration :-)

  • Wow! What a "sun"sational video. Great info and super cute!! Thanks for the education.

  • That was awesome! Very informative and I love the monkey!

  • As a vegetarian, if I had a nickel for every person who has asked, "Where do you get your protein?" Thanks for educating people with this!

  • Defiantly going to have to try your products soon. Always looking for decent tasting ways to add more protein that is not all amimal based.

  • oops I meant to say protein balances the checks and minus in perspective....

  • Protein is the allance of muscle and mass. Too much of anything can harm but just enough along with other minerals will enhance the protein and places the checks and pluses to maintain exact body mass. Yes, muscle does come to mind first but to build muscle over protein can lead to excess fat.

  • This is a great, fun and informative video. From an artist point of view I was engaged from the get go! I loved the graphics and enjoyed keeping up with the artist's renderings.From a health conscious ''monkey" (my chinese astrology sign) I loved clear simple information as well as the storyline(II certainly have had my share of yuckie tasting, bloat-guarenteed protein powders).
    I already use Warrior Blend Raw Protein Vanilla(Vegan) so of course I love the taste! It blends smoothly and easily. I actually look forward to every morning I start with my Sun Warrior protein drink!
    Way to go Sun Warrior- you've got a hit!

  • Definitely the best Raw Vegan Plant Based protein available, especially for someone with an autoimmune disease, GMO, Soya, Gluten and Dairy free. 100% RAW. What more could one ask for. If there is one protein you need trying is from Sunwarrior. Excellent!!!

  • Thanks