High protein diets improve blood glucose control, study shows

Kurt Wood
Mon, 21 Sep 2015
High protein diets improve blood glucose control, study shows
Diets high in protein improve blood sugar control in people with type 2 diabetes, according to new research.

The study, presented at the 51st Annual Meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes, did not incur any adverse effects on kidney function.

The researchers analysed the impact of two different high-protein diets: one derived from animal protein, and one from plant protein.

In total, 37 people took part in the study, 24 men and 13 women. Each participant was randomly assigned to either the plant protein-based or animal protein-based group, then followed that diet for six weeks.

All participants reported lower HbA1c levels and liver fat. The animal protein group improved their insulin sensitivityinsulin sensitivity, and the plant protein group experienced better kidney function. No improvement in kidney function was reported by the animal protein group.

The study focused exclusively on people with type 2 diabetes. Although the findings could translate to people with type 1 diabetes, the researchers did not examine it.

"In diabetic subjects, the six-week high-protein diet leads to an improvement in glucose metabolism and decrease in liver fat independently from the protein source," wrote the researchers.

"The high-protein diet has no adverse effects on kidney parameters, moreover the kidney function actually improved in the plant protein group."

The findings, although interesting, need to be tested further. Only 37 people took part in the study, which is not enough to draw definitive conclusions, so larger studies with a wider range are needed.
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