Weight Loss Concept Before and After

A new way to lose weight could change your metabolism

The study involved twenty-one different patients with metabolic syndrome. They received either a low-calorie diet or a low-protein diet.

According to new research, protein restriction is effective in the fight against obesity and diabetes.

According to a study comparing the effects of protein and calorie restriction diets in humans, reducing protein intake can help control metabolic syndrome and some of its main symptoms, such as obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure. The results of the study were recently published in the journal Nutrients.

The term “metabolic syndrome” refers to a group of conditions, including high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist, and abnormal cholesterol levels, which increase the risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cerebrovascular accidents.

“The study showed that reducing protein intake to 0.8 g per kg body weight was sufficient to achieve almost the same clinical results as calorie restriction, but without the need to reduce protein. caloric intake. The results suggest that protein restriction may be one of the key factors leading to the known benefits of dietary restriction. A protein restriction diet may therefore be a more appealing and easier-to-follow nutritional strategy for people with metabolic syndrome,” said Rafael Ferraz-Bannitz, first author of the paper and currently a postdoctoral researcher at the Joslin Diabetes Center of the Harvard Medical School in the United States. States.

Controlled feeding

The research involved 21 people with metabolic syndrome who were followed for 27 days. Throughout this period, they were hospitalized at the FMRP-USP University Hospital (Hospital das Clnicas in Ribeiro Preto).

Each participant’s daily caloric intake was determined based on their initial metabolism (resting energy expenditure). A conventional Western diet of 50% carbs, 20% protein and 30% fat was served to one group, but it contained 25% fewer calories.

Protein consumption was reduced to 10% in the second group. The caloric intake of each volunteer was adapted to their basic energy expenditure. 4 grams of salt was consumed daily by both groups.

The results showed that the calorie and protein restriction groups lost weight due to a decrease in body fat and that symptoms of metabolic syndrome improved. Decreasing body fat is known to be associated with lower blood sugar and more normal levels of lipids and blood pressure.

“After 27 days of monitoring, both groups achieved similar results in terms of lower blood sugar, weight loss, blood pressure control, and lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels. Both diets improved insulin sensitivity after treatment. Body fat decreased, as did waist and hip circumference, but without loss of muscle mass,” said Maria Cristina Foss de Freitas, the paper’s final author and professor at FMRP-USP.

The results confirmed those of previous studies involving experiments on mice. “Here, however, we managed to conduct a fully controlled randomized clinical trial lasting 27 days, with a personalized menu designed to meet the needs of each patient,” said Foss de Freitas.

Manipulation of dietary macronutrients—proteins, carbohydrates, and fats—is sufficient to achieve the beneficial effects of dietary restriction. “We have demonstrated that protein restriction reduces body fat while maintaining muscle mass. This is important because weight loss from restrictive diets is often associated with loss of muscle mass,” Ferraz-Bannitz said.

The study did not investigate the molecular mechanisms that might explain the beneficial effects of protein restriction diets, but the researchers believe that low protein intake triggered a change in metabolism or improved the body’s energy management by causing it to burn fat in order to produce energy for cells. “We only have hypotheses at the moment. The first is that molecular pathways are activated to interpret the reduction of

amino acids

Amino acids are a set of organic compounds used to make proteins. There are approximately 500 known natural amino acids, although only 20 appear in the genetic code. Proteins are made up of one or more chains of amino acids called polypeptides. The amino acid chain sequence causes the polypeptide to fold into a form that is biologically active. The amino acid sequences of proteins are encoded in genes. Nine proteinogenic amino acids are called "essential" for humans because they cannot be produced from other compounds by the human body and therefore must be consumed as food.

” data-gt-translate-attributes=”[{” attribute=””>amino acids as being a signal to reduce food intake while leading to the production of hormones that typically increase when we’re fasting,” Mori said. “Studies in animal models have shown the involvement of such pathways in the effects of both protein and calorie restriction, both of which lead to fat loss.”

Despite the promising results of their studies, the researchers point out that the diets involved were personalized. Mori also stressed that they focused on a specific population of patients with metabolic syndrome (obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and abnormal levels of cholesterol).

“Nevertheless, it’s tempting to extrapolate the results. We know research has shown vegan diets to be positive for cases of metabolic syndrome. It’s also been found that the excessive protein intake common in the standard Western diet can be a problem. Every case should be analyzed on its own merits. We shouldn’t forget protein deficiency can lead to severe health problems, as has been well-described in pregnant women, for example,” he added.

Reference: “Dietary Protein Restriction Improves Metabolic Dysfunction in Patients with Metabolic Syndrome in a Randomized, Controlled Trial” by Rafael Ferraz-Bannitz, Rebeca A. Beraldo, A. Augusto Peluso, Morten Dall, Parizad Babaei, Rayana Cardoso Foglietti, Larissa Marfori Martins, Patricia Moreira Gomes, Julio Sergio Marchini, Vivian Marques Miguel Suen, Luiz C. Conti de Freitas, Luiz Carlos Navegantes, Marco Antônio M. Pretti, Mariana Boroni, Jonas T. Treebak, Marcelo A. Mori, Milton Cesar Foss and Maria Cristina Foss-Freitas, 28 June 2022, Nutrients.
DOI: 10.3390/nu14132670

The study was funded by the São Paulo Research Foundation. The study also benefited from a FAPESP Thematic Project on strategies for mimicking the effects of dietary restriction, led by Marcelo Mori, a professor at the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), also in Brazil.

A multidisciplinary team of scientists conducted the study, including researchers affiliated with the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, the University of São Paulo, and the National Cancer Institute (INCA) in Brazil, as well as the Obesity and Comorbidities Research Center (OCRC), a Research, Innovation, and Dissemination Center (RIDC) funded by FAPESP and hosted by UNICAMP.


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