Author(s): Te Morenga LA, Levers MT, Williams SM, Brown RC, Mann J
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Studies have suggested that moderately high protein diets may be more appropriate than conventional low-fat high carbohydrate diets for individuals at risk of developing the metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. However in most such studies sources of dietary carbohydrate may not have been appropriate and protein intakes may have been excessively high. Thus, in a proof-of-concept study we compared two relatively low-fat weight loss diets - one high in protein and the other high in fiber-rich, minimally processed cereals and legumes - to determine whether a relatively high protein diet has the potential to confer greater benefits. METHODS: Eighty-three overweight or obese women, 18-65 years, were randomized to either a moderately high protein (30\% protein, 40\% carbohydrate) diet (HP) or to a high fiber, relatively high carbohydrate (50\% carbohydrate, > 35 g total dietary fiber, 20\% protein) diet (HFib) for 8 weeks. Energy intakes were reduced by 2000 - 4000 kJ per day in order to achieve weight loss of between 0.5 and 1 kg per week. RESULTS: Participants on both diets lost weight (HP: -4.5 kg [95\% confidence interval (CI):-3.7, -5.4 kg] and HFib: -3.3 kg [95\% CI: -4.2, -2.4 kg]), and reduced total body fat (HP: -4.0 kg [5\% CI:-4.6, -3.4 kg] and HFib: -2.5 kg [95\% CI: -3.5, -1.6 kg]), and waist circumference (HP: -5.4 cm [95\% CI: -6.3, -4.5 cm] and HFib: -4.7 cm [95\% CI: -5.8, -3.6 cm]), as well as total and LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, fasting plasma glucose and blood pressure. However participants on HP lost more body weight (-1.3 kg [95\% CI: -2.5, -0.1 kg; p = 0.039]) and total body fat (-1.3 kg [95\% CI: -2.4, -0.1; p = 0.029]). Diastolic blood pressure decreased more on HP (-3.7 mm Hg [95\% CI: -6.2, -1.1; p = 0.005]). CONCLUSIONS: A realistic high protein weight-reducing diet was associated with greater fat loss and lower blood pressure when compared with a high carbohydrate, high fiber diet in high risk overweight and obese women.
This article was published in Nutr J
and referenced in Journal of Nutrition & Food Sciences