To lose weight, stop grazing, eat protein

March 31, 2011 at 10:02 AM
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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind., March 31 (UPI) -- An English breakfast and two other square meals a day, with lots of protein, may be key for those losing weight to feel full, U.S. researchers say.

Heather J. Leidy of the University of Missouri, a postdoctoral researcher at Purdue for this study, said 27 obese and overweight men were divided into a high-protein consuming group and a normal-protein consuming group, but all ate a calorie-restricted diet for 12 weeks -- 750 calories less than their normal diet -- an average of about 2,400 calories per person a day.

The normal-protein diet was composed of 14 percent protein, 60 percent from carbohydrate and 26 percent from fat, while the high-protein diet had the same amount of fat, but 25 percent of energy from protein and 49 percent from carbohydrate.

"We found that when eating high amounts of protein, men who were trying to lose weight felt fuller throughout the day; they also experienced a reduction in late-night desire to eat and had fewer thoughts of food," Leidy said in a statement.

"We also found that despite the common trend of eating smaller, more frequent meals, eating frequency had relatively no beneficial impact on appetite control."

The research was funded by the National Pork Board, the American Egg Board, the Purdue Ingestive Behavior Research Center and the National Institutes of Health's Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute.

The findings are published in the journal Obesity.

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