Background & aims: High protein diets have been shown to improve hepatic steatosis in rodent models and in high-fat fed humans. We therefore evaluated the effects of a protein supplementation on intrahepatocellular lipids (IHCL), and fasting plasma triglycerides in obese non diabetic women.
Methods: Eleven obese women received a 60 g/day whey protein supplement (WPS) for 4-weeks, while otherwise nourished on a spontaneous diet, IHCL concentrations, visceral body fat, total liver volume (MR), fasting total-triglyceride and cholesterol concentrations, glucose tolerance (standard 75 g OGTT), insulin sensitivity (HOMA IS index), creatinine clearance, blood pressure and body composition (bio-impedance analysis) were assessed before and after 4-week WPS.
Results: IHCL were positively correlated with visceral fat and total liver volume at inclusion. WPS decreased significantly IHCL by 20.8 ± 7.7%, fasting total TG by 15 ± 6.9%, and total cholesterol by 7.3 ± 2.7%. WPS slightly increased fat free mass from 54.8 ± 2.2 kg to 56.7 ± 2.5 kg, p = 0.005). Visceral fat, total liver volume, glucose tolerance, creatinine clearance and insulin sensitivity were not changed.
Conclusions: WPS improves hepatic steatosis and plasma lipid profiles in obese non diabetic patients, without adverse effects on glucose tolerance or creatinine clearance.
Trial number: NCT00870077, ClinicalTrials.gov.
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