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Pre-Breakfast Drink with Whey and Guar May Help Manage Blood Sugar Markers

Previous studies have shown that large preloads of protein and fat can lower blood sugar levels after a carbohydrate-rich meal in diabetics. However this also adds a lot of calories to the diabetics’ diet. A recent study suggests that drinking a low-calorie beverage consisting of whey and guar proteins before a carbohydrate-rich breakfast may help lower blood glucose levels of pre-diabetics and type diabetics.

Participants in the study included 11 confirmed pre-diabetics and 13 type-2 diabetics. They consumed an 80-calorie, 50 g protein fiber mix or a placebo of water before breakfast every day for five days. The supplement contained 17 g of whey protein, 3 g lactose, 5 g guar, and 1 g of flavor material. The breakfast each day was two slices of bread for the women (three slices for the men) with margarine and jam.

In order to test blood sugar levels, the researchers did four finger prick tests per day.

At the conclusion of the study, the researchers found that the protein group had slower gastric emptying, increased insulin, and lower glucose by approximately 3 mmol/L. Peak fingerprick glucose was reduced by 2.1 mmol/L at 45 min. Average fingerprick glucose over 3 hours was reduced by 0.8 mmol/L

Researchers from the University of South Australia and the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institutes conducted the study. It was published on October 25, 2014, in Nutrition Journal.

Whey protein is one of the two proteins found in milk, but is only approximately 1% of the composition of milk. It is obtained as a byproduct of cheese making and can be purchased in powder form from health food stores. Additionally, it can be found in ricotta cheese, which is one of the only cheeses that do not have the whey removed, and also in yogurt.

Guar is a bean protein that consists of more than 75% dietary fiber. It is rich in vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese, vitamin A, dietary fiber, iron, and potassium.

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