Differential effects of dietary protein sources on postprandial low-grade inflammation after a single high fat meal in obese non-diabetic subjects

Nutr J. 2011 Oct 19;10:115. doi: 10.1186/1475-2891-10-115.


Background: Obesity is a state of chronic low-grade inflammation. Chronic low-grade inflammation is associated with the pathophysiology of both type-2 diabetes and atherosclerosis. Prevention or reduction of chronic low-grade inflammation may be advantageous in relation to obesity related co-morbidity. In this study we investigated the acute effect of dietary protein sources on postprandial low-grade inflammatory markers after a high-fat meal in obese non-diabetic subjects.

Methods: We conducted a randomized, acute clinical intervention study in a crossover design. We supplemented a fat rich mixed meal with one of four dietary proteins - cod protein, whey isolate, gluten or casein. 11 obese non-diabetic subjects (age: 40-68, BMI: 30.3-42.0 kg/m2) participated and blood samples were drawn in the 4 h postprandial period. Adiponectin was estimated by ELISA methods and cytokines were analyzed by multiplex assay.

Results: MCP-1 and CCL5/RANTES displayed significant postprandial dynamics. CCL5/RANTES initially increased after all meals, but overall CCL5/RANTES incremental area under the curve (iAUC) was significantly lower after the whey meal compared with the cod and casein meals (P = 0.0053). MCP-1 was initially suppressed after all protein meals. However, the iAUC was significantly higher after whey meal compared to the cod and gluten meals (P = 0.04).

Conclusion: We have demonstrated acute differential effects on postprandial low grade inflammation of four dietary proteins in obese non-diabetic subjects. CCL5/RANTES initially increased after all meals but the smallest overall postprandial increase was observed after the whey meal. MCP-1 was initially suppressed after all 4 protein meals and the whey meal caused the smallest overall postprandial suppression.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov ID: NCT00863564.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adiponectin / blood
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Animals
  • Caseins / administration & dosage
  • Chemokine CCL2 / blood
  • Chemokine CCL5 / biosynthesis
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2
  • Dietary Fats / administration & dosage*
  • Dietary Proteins / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Gadus morhua
  • Glutens / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / etiology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Milk Proteins / administration & dosage
  • Obesity / physiopathology*
  • Postprandial Period / drug effects*
  • Whey Proteins


  • Adiponectin
  • CCL2 protein, human
  • CCL5 protein, human
  • Caseins
  • Chemokine CCL2
  • Chemokine CCL5
  • Dietary Fats
  • Dietary Proteins
  • Milk Proteins
  • Whey Proteins
  • Glutens

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT00863564