Health and Nutrition


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Protein is required daily in the diet to provide the building blocks for the body’s cells and tissues, as part of important enzymes and hormones, to build and strengthen muscles and as an important component of a strong immune system.

Protein is made up of components called amino acids. There are 20 amino acids that the body requires in order to build all of the proteins required for health and normal functioning of the body.  Of these, there are 9 that have to be provided by the diet and these are called the ‘essential’ or ‘indispensable’ amino acids.

The recommended dietary intake (RDI) for protein varies depending on age and gender.  The following table highlights the recommendations:

Children 1-3 years


Children 4-8 years


Boys 9-13 years


Girls 9-13 years


Boys 14-18 years


Girls 14-18 years



Men 19-70 years



Women 19-70 years


Men 70+ years


Women 70+ years



Sources of protein in the diet are extensive and include meat products, dairy, eggs, nuts, legumes and soy products. While animal sources of protein provide a good balance of essential amino acids, most plant sources do not.

You may be interested to know that the protein found in eggs is considered to be of the highest quality, providing the right amount and balance of amino acids to match human requirements. A serve of eggs* provides an average of 12.7grams of protein, representing a quarter of the recommended dietary intake (RDI) for adults and a third of the RDI for children.  


While the majority of Australians meet the current recommended intakes for protein, there are certain groups within the population that may benefit from increased intakes or higher quality sources, including ovo-vegetarians, children and adolescents, elderly people, those participating in resistance training and those managing their weight.

Due to their significant contribution to nutrient intakes, eggs can be a valuable inclusion in a healthy diet and contribute significant amounts of high quality protein to assist in meeting daily requirements.

* A serve of eggs equals to two large eggs.