What is a Protein and why are they important?

Proteins are large, complex molecules that play many critical roles in the body. They do most of the work in cells and are required for the structure, function, and regulation of the body’s tissues and organs.

Proteins are important because they perform many of the essential functions of our cells and form much of the structure of our body. For example, insulin is a protein that triggers our cells to let in glucose for energy. Our taste bud receptors on our tongues that let us experience the delicious foods of the world are proteins. Hemoglobin, which carries oxygen through our blood stream, is a protein. These, and the 20,000 others encoded by our DNA, carry out the activities and chemical reactions necessary for life.

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