Proline is a nonessential amino acid that can be manufactured by the body from another amino acid called glutamic acid. Proline is the precursor to hydroxyproline, which is a major amino acid found in the connective tissue of the body – collagen, which can be found in the skin, bones, and joints. As the most abundant protein in the body, collagen is essential in maintaining the proper structure and strength of connective tissue, such as bones, skin, cartilage and blood vessels.
Proline plays an important role in protein synthesis, structure and metabolism. This nonessential amino acid is also involved in wound healing, antioxidant reactions, and immune response, and used for skin healing.
Proline deficiency can lead to brittle skin and blood vessels, heart weakness and joint problems. Proline is sometimes prescribed in the form of dietary supplements, but to prevent side effects from taking this amino acid, it is always recommended to seek the advice of a medical doctor or health care practitioner.
The best sources of proline in the diet are bone broth and other high-protein foods, especially animal products, such as meat (e.g. pork, beef, lamb, veal, game products), poultry, gelatin, dairy products (e.g. cheese) and seafood (e.g. whelk, cuttlefish, octopus, scallop). Soybeans, soy products (e.g. natto, tempeh, tofu), and seeds (e.g. pumpkin, sunflower) are also high in proline.
Athletes who meet their daily protein needs through diet alone by consuming protein from a wide variety of foods, don’t necessarily need extra amino acid supplementation. However, in some cases, such as being injured, having good levels of proline can help with wound healing. It is recommended to get advice from your doctor or health care practitioner before adding supplements to your daily routine.
In conclusion, our proline levels impact many aspects of our mental and physical health. In order to make sure that your proline levels are balanced and steady, make sure to test your levels and to evaluate how you can make the right changes to rebalance your body and mind.