Beans, beef, chicken, fish and eggs. Either from plants or animals, these sources of protein provide the body with the amino acids it uses for growth, tissue repair and immune function. Proteins produce hormones, enzymes and energy, and power chemical reactions in the body.

According to nutrition experts, the amount of protein each person needs differs based on factors such as activity level, sex, gender, height, weight, age and even health.

But, generally speaking, each day, children ages 1 to 3 need 13 grams of protein; ages 4 to 8, 19 grams; and ages 9 to 13, 34 grams. Girls ages 14 to 18 require 46 grams of protein while boys of the same age need 52 grams. And women ages 19 to 70 need 46 grams of protein each day compared with 56 grams required for men of the same age.

Just make sure you choose quality proteins from a variety of healthy sources.