Protein-Pacing Caloric-Restriction Enhances Body Composition Similarly in Obese Men and Women during Weight Loss and Sustains Efficacy during Long-Term Weight Maintenance.Nutrients. 2016 Jul 30; 8(8)N
Short-Term protein-pacing (P; ~6 meals/day, >30% protein/day) and caloric restriction (CR, ~25% energy deficit) improves total (TBF), abdominal (ABF) and visceral (VAT) fat loss, energy expenditure, and biomarkers compared to heart healthy (HH) recommendations (3 meals/day, 15% protein/day) in obese adults. Less is known whether obese men and women respond similarly to P-CR during weight loss (WL) and whether a modified P-CR (mP-CR) is more efficacious than a HH diet during long-term (52 week) weight maintenance (WM). The purposes of this study were to evaluate the efficacy of: (1) P-CR on TBF, ABF, resting metabolic rate (RMR), and biomarkers between obese men and women during WL (weeks 0-12); and (2) mP-CR compared to a HH diet during WM (weeks 13-64). During WL, men (n = 21) and women (n = 19) were assessed for TBF, ABF, VAT, RMR, and biomarkers at weeks 0 (pre) and 12 (post). Men and women had similar reductions (p < 0.01) in weight (10%), TBF (19%), ABF (25%), VAT (33%), glucose (7%-12%), insulin (40%), leptin (>50%) and increase in % lean body mass (9%). RMR (kcals/kg bodyweight) was unchanged and respiratory quotient decreased 9%. Twenty-four subjects (mP-CR, n = 10; HH, n = 14) completed WM. mP-CR regained significantly less body weight (6%), TBF (12%), and ABF (17%) compared to HH (p < 0.05). Our results demonstrate P-CR enhances weight loss, body composition and biomarkers, and maintains these changes for 52-weeks compared to a traditional HH diet.