The effect of a low-fat, high-protein or high-carbohydrate ad libitum diet on weight loss maintenance and metabolic risk factors.
Author(s): Claessens M, van Baak MA, Monsheimer S, Saris WH
Affiliation(s): Department of Human Biology, Nutrition and Toxicology Research institute Maastricht, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands.
Publication date & source: 2009-03, Int J Obes (Lond)., 33(3):296-304. Epub 2009 Jan 20.
Publication type: Comparative Study; Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
BACKGROUND: High-protein (HP) diets are often advocated for weight reduction and weight loss maintenance. OBJECTIVE: The aim was to compare the effect of low-fat, high-carbohydrate (HC) and low-fat, HP ad libitum diets on weight maintenance after weight loss induced by a very low-calorie diet, and on metabolic and cardiovascular risk factors in healthy obese subjects. DESIGN: Forty-eight subjects completed the study that consisted of an energy restriction period of 5-6 weeks followed by a weight maintenance period of 12 weeks. During weight maintenance subjects received maltodextrin (HC group) or protein (HP group) (casein (HPC subgroup) or whey (HPW subgroup)) supplements (2 x 25 g per day), respectively and consumed a low-fat diet. RESULTS: Subjects in the HP diet group showed significantly better weight maintenance after weight loss (2.3 kg difference, P=0.04) and fat mass reduction (2.2 kg difference, P=0.02) than subjects in the HC group. Triglyceride (0.6 mM difference, P=0.01) and glucagon (9.6 pg ml(-1) difference, P=0.02) concentrations increased more in the HC diet group, while glucose (0.3 mM difference, P=0.02) concentration increased more in the HP diet group. Changes in total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol, insulin, HOMAir index, HbA1c, leptin and adiponectin concentrations did not differ between the diets. No differences were found between the casein- or whey-supplemented HP groups. CONCLUSIONS: These results show that low-fat, high-casein or whey protein weight maintenance diets are more effective for weight control than low-fat, HC diets and do not adversely affect metabolic and cardiovascular risk factors in weight-reduced moderately obese subjects without metabolic or cardiovascular complications.