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Comparison of the effects of weight loss from a high-protein versus standard-protein energy-restricted diet on strength and aerobic capacity in overweight and obese men

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A Correction to this article was published on 10 September 2020

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Abstract

Purpose

To compare the effects of two low-fat, hypoenergetic diets differing in carbohydrate-to-protein ratio, on strength and aerobic capacity measures in overweight and obese men.

Methods

In a parallel design, 56 men (age, 45.5 ± 8.7 years; BMI, 33.6 ± 3.9 kg/m2) were randomly assigned to a low-fat, energy-restricted diet (7,000 kJ/day) with either high protein (HP: protein/carbohydrate/fat % energy, 35:40:25) or standard protein (SP, 17:58:25). Body weight, body composition, muscle strength and aerobic capacity were assessed at baseline and after 12 weeks.

Results

Forty-two participants completed the study (HP, n = 21; SP, n = 21). Both groups experienced similar reductions in body weight (HP, −10.7 ± 5.3 kg [−9.8%]; SP, −8.7 ± 3.5 kg [−8.4%]) and fat-free mass (HP, −2.8 ± 3.6 kg; SP, −3.2 ± 2.7 kg; P < 0.001 time; P > 0.14 time × group interaction). There was a trend for a greater reduction in fat mass in the HP diet group, (−7.7 ± 4.3 kg [−21.2%] vs. −5.4 ± 3.3 kg [−15.1%]; P < 0.001 time; P = 0.06 time × group interaction). Absolute peak oxygen uptake did not change in either group (P = 0.39 time; P = 0.50 time × group interaction). Overall, in both groups, relative peak oxygen uptake increased (2.9 ± 2.8 ml kg−1 min−1 [8.9%]), peak isometric knee extensor strength increased (14.1 ± 35.7 Nm [7.1%]) and peak handgrip strength decreased (−1.6 ± 4.1 kg [−3%]) (P ≤ 0.02 time for all), with no diet effect (P ≤ 0.23 time × group interaction).

Conclusion

In overweight and obese men, both a HP and SP diet reduced body weight and improved body composition with similar effects on strength and aerobic capacity.

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Change history

  • 10 September 2020

    The original version of this article unfortunately contained a mistake.

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Acknowledgments

We thank the volunteers who made the study possible through their participation. We gratefully acknowledge Julia Weaver, Anne McGuffin and Kathryn Bastiaans for co-ordinating this trial; Julie Syrette for managing the trial data; Ian Pateyjohns for assisting in the exercise data collection; Jennifer Keogh and Gemma Williams for assisting in delivering of the dietary intervention; Rosemary McArthur for providing nursing expertise; Alison Hill and Kade Davison for conducting the body composition scans. This work was supported with a project grant from Meat and Livestock Australia.

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The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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Correspondence to Grant D. Brinkworth.

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Wycherley, T.P., Buckley, J.D., Noakes, M. et al. Comparison of the effects of weight loss from a high-protein versus standard-protein energy-restricted diet on strength and aerobic capacity in overweight and obese men. Eur J Nutr 52, 317–325 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00394-012-0338-0

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