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Different protein types by multiple classifications



Proteins are macronutrients consisting mainly of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen , although some also contain sulfur and phosphorous. It is found in all types of life, not just in humans. Where plants make the inorganic nitrogen proteins.

 But animals, which are unable to carry out this process, must therefore incorporate these substances through their diet. Proteins are formed by the union of several amino acids linked by peptide bonds. Since these biomolecules are so important to understanding what our bodies look like, it helps to know some of the types of proteins that are more common or relevant to us.

What are the types of protein? How is it classified?

Proteins are part of our diet which we consume daily. Proteins are made of chains of amino acids and are divided into basic and non-essential. Essential amino acids are those that our bodies cannot manufacture and therefore must be consumed with the diet from food.

Within this group: leucine, isoleucine, lysine, methionine , phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, valine and histidine, including arginine, which is necessary for young children because their requirements are greater and they cannot manufacture everything necessary, and non-essential amino acids are those that he can Our bodies manufacture them. Among the types of protein according to classification, we mention the following:

Proteins by origin:

Among one of the best known classifications according to its origin:  

Animal proteins:

Animal proteins are those that are sourced from animals, and protein-rich foods of animal origin are eggs, meat, fish and dairy products. The protein is said to be of complete animal origin and of quality because it contains all the essential amino acids.

 Plant proteins:

Plant proteins are those that come from vegetables, legumes, and wheat flour. But most plant-based foods do not contain complete protein because they lack essential amino acids. Except for a few exceptions, plant-based foods that contain complete proteins, such as soybeans, chickpeas, quinoa, hemp seeds and chia.

Classification of proteins according to their function:

Types of protein can be classified according to function in the body into:

Hormonal protein:

They are proteins that you secrete, and the hormonal protein that travels through the blood acts as a chemical messenger and transmits information from one cell to another. You can learn more about this type of peptide hormone .

Enzymatic or catalytic proteins:

These proteins speed up metabolic processes in cells, including liver function, digestion, or the conversion of glycogen into glucose.

Structural protein:

Structural proteins, also known as fibrous proteins, are essential components of our body. They include collagen, keratin, and elastin. Just like elastin, collagen is found in connective tissues, bone, and cartilage. Keratin is a structural part of hair, nails, teeth, and skin

Defensive protein:

These proteins have an immune or antibody function, which keeps bacteria in place. Antibodies form on white blood cells and attack bacteria, viruses, and other microorganisms.

Storage proteins:

Storage proteins store mineral ions such as potassium or iron. It is an important function, since iron storage is vital to avoid the negative effects of this substance.

Transport proteins:

One of the functions of proteins is transport within our bodies, because they transport minerals into cells. Example hemoglobin carries oxygen from tissues to the lungs.

Receptor proteins:

These receptors are usually found outside of cells to control substances that go into cells. For example, GABAergic neurons have different protein receptors on their membranes.

Contracted protein:

Also known as motor proteins. These proteins regulate the strength and speed of contractions of the heart or muscles. Like: myosin.

Proteins by shape:

Conformation is the three-dimensional orientation that distinct groups of a protein molecule acquire in a vacuum, by virtue of the freedom with which they must rotate.

Fibrous proteins:

It has polypeptide long chains and a secondary structure in which one type of secondary structure predominates, the alpha helix or beta leaf. It has repeating sequences of residues. It usually has a structural function. Parallel and adjacent chains are often linked by covalent bonds such as disulfide or others, as they are insoluble in water and in aqueous solutions. Some examples of this are keratin, collagen, and fibrin.

Globular proteins:

These proteins have the advantage of folding their chains into a tight spherical or compact shape, leaving hydrophobic groups inside the protein and hydrophilic groups outside, making them soluble in polar solvents such as water. Various elements of the secondary structure are presented in the same polypeptide chain (alpha helices, beta sheets, and turns). The beta sheets are usually rolled up, as most enzymes, antibodies, some hormones, and transport proteins are examples of globular proteins.

Mixed proteins:

They contain a fibrous portion (usually in the center of the protein) and a globular portion (at the ends).

Classification of proteins according to their composition:

 Depending on their composition, the types of protein can be:


 They are simple proteins, made primarily of amino acids.


Heteroproteins or their conjugate proteins, usually consisting of a non-amino acid component, can be:


They are in structure with sugars.


 In the form of a fatty structure.

Nuclear proteins:

They are proteins linked to DNA. For example, chromosomes and ribosomes.

Mineral proteins:

It contains one or more metal ions in its molecule. For example: some enzymes. Also, blood proteins or chromoproteins. They have a heme group in their structure, for example: hemoglobin.

Functions of different protein types

Although many people know the structural function of protein, which is essential for generating muscles, it has many very important functions, including:

  • The function of the enzyme to perform chemical functions.
  • Hormonal function such as insulin regulates the concentration of glucose in the blood.
  • The transport function and other substances such as the oxygen carried by hemoglobin.
  • Defense function: such as keratin that protects the skin or the glycoproteins that produce immunoglobulins.
  • Signal reception function.

In the end..

Vegetarian people have no problem when it comes to getting any type of protein from food, as long as they eat a varied diet of vegetarian foods. On the other hand, people who eat a diet that includes foods of both animal and plant origin should always avoid unhealthy foods.


Different types of protein, according to several classifications:

Functions of different protein types:

Proteins by Shape:



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