Athletes and dieters have utilized high-protein diets for years in order to boost muscle recovery and aid in weight loss. A recent study adds further scientific support to this move, finding that eating a protein-rich diet may increase lean muscle mass by as much as 45% and improve metabolism.
Participants in the study included 16 healthy adults. Over the course of eight weeks they were assigned excess calories diets that contained 5%, 15%, or 25% protein. In order to measure metabolic rate, the researchers looked at diet-induced thermogenesis (DIT), which they measured over four hours by indirect calorimetry after meals. They also measured excess calorie storage and body composition.
The researchers found that the high protein diet (25%) was associated with short-term changes in DIT but that no alteration occurred over a longer period of time. They also found that the increase in metabolism seen in the high protein group was not sustained once the participants returned to a normal protein diet.
Participants who ate high and normal levels of protein stored 45% of the excess calories as lean muscle, while the low protein group stored 95% as fat.
Researchers from Pennington Biomedical Research Center led the study. It was presented at the Obesity Societys annual Obesity Week meeting on November 6, 2014.
Protein functions as a building block for bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood. It is also a building block for enzymes, hormones, and vitamins. To get the optimal benefit from protein, its important to choose the right type. Some good sources of animal protein include fish, poultry, and lean meat. In addition, previous studies have found that proteins from dairy are especially good for building muscle mass.
Studies examining the association between blood pressure and tea have come back with inconsistent results. A recent study sought to address that issue and found that green tea may help control blood pressure in non-smokers.
Participants in the study included 1109 Chinese men and women who took part in the Jiangsu Nutrition Study between 2002 and 2007. The researchers took blood pressure measurements at the onset and conclusion of the study. They assessed both black and green tea consumption in a follow-up survey in 2007.
After examining the data, the researchers discovered that both total tea and green tea consumption were inversely associated with smaller increases in diastolic but not systolic blood pressure. Specifically, drinking at least 10g per day of total tea daily was associated with a 2.41mmHg lower increase in diastolic blood pressure compared to those who did not drink tea. Drinking the same amount of green tea daily was associated with a 3.68 mmHg lower increase.
The same effects were not seen for black tea alone nor for smokers.
Researchers from the University of Adelain in Australia and the Jiangsu Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention in China conducted the study. It was published on October 14, 2014, in Nutrition Journal.
Green tea has been linked in previous studies with numerous health benefits. These benefits are usually attributed to the high level of powerful antioxidants found in green tea called polyphenols, which have been shown to promote weight loss, improve heart health, aid in digestion and decrease the risk of neurodegenerative diseases.