How Does the Body Digest Protein?

Protein is more than just a nutrient. It’s also a component in almost every part of the human body, including the muscles, eyes, hair, organs, and a wide variety of enzymes and hormones. It also makes tissue maintenance by the body faster and more effective. However, to effectively use this substance, your body must be able to digest it. In this article, we will discuss how your body digests protein.

How Does the Body Digest Protein?

The body digests protein through enzymes. The entire process begins in your mouth when you start chewing your food. Still, unlike fatty acids and carbohydrates broken down by enzymes in the saliva, all that happens to protein in the mouth is that they are reduced to smaller pieces for you to swallow them.

However, when the protein gets to your stomach, it is with protease and hydrochloric acid, which breaks down the protein into smaller forms of amino acids. These shorter chains of amino acids travel from the stomach to the small intestine. The pancreas secretes a buffer made of bicarbonate and digestive enzymes while this is happening, neutralizing the digested food’s acidity.

Other enzymes interact with the food during this stage. Some of these enzymes are chymotrypsin, trypsin, and carboxypeptidase.

How Does Your Body Absorb Protein?

The microvilli in your small intestine are responsible for absorbing protein. Microvilli are small finger-like structures in the small intestine that improve digestion. Because of them, the body can absorb as many healthy nutrients as possible because of them.

Amino acids are transported throughout the body via the bloodstream after absorption, where they can begin building muscle and repairing tissue.

Is It Possible For Your Body to Absorb More Protein?

Yes, you can absorb more protein. However, to do this, you must ensure that the protein you consume has the nine most important amino acids. Foods that contain these amino acids in their entirety are meat, eggs, fish, and dairy products. For vegetarians, whole grains with legumes and grains are excellent sources of amino acids.

In addition to selecting high-quality protein options, there are lifestyle changes that can improve nutrient absorption. Some examples are spreading your meals throughout the day, chewing each food thoroughly, reducing your alcohol intake, taking probiotics, eating protein throughout the day, and not engaging in strenuous activities immediately after eating.


While this article provides valuable information, it’s important to remember that everyone has different nutritional requirements based on age, sex, weight, and physical activity level. Consulting a registered dietitian can help you get tailored advice that works for your body and schedule. That said, do not drastically change your diet or exercise regimen without first talking to your doctor. Remember that you should always prioritize your health and that getting professional advice can help you make better dietary and lifestyle choices.