Whether you cannot operate a different type of business under the llc than what was initially considered depends on whether your articles of organization for the llc indicates the llc is formed to carry out any lawful business. That is generally the language used, and if it was used in your case, you are fine to start your new business under the same llc.
As to whether you are protected: the llc does carry limited liability protection but you need to make sure your llc is still considered in good standing with your state's secretary of state (or other agency with whom you filed your llc paperwork when you created your llc). If it is still in good standing you're ok -- if not, you'll likely need to pay some fees to get it reinstated and in good standing and then you're good to go.
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