Aims/introduction: The interactive effects of resistance training and dietary protein on hormonal responses in adults are not clear and remain controversial. We tested the effect of an isocaloric high-protein diet on body composition, ghrelin, and metabolic and hormonal parameters during a 12-week resistance training program in untrained healthy young men.
Material and methods: We randomized 18 healthy young men to a standard diet (ST group) or an isocaloric high protein diet (HP group). Both groups participated in a 12-week resistance exercise program. We measured body composition, lipid profile, homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) indices, total ghrelin, and exercise-related hormones at baseline and 12 weeks.
Results: In the HP group, lean body mass (LBM), total ghrelin, growth hormone, testosterone and cortisol levels showed an increase, whereas body fat percentage and HOMA-IR showed a decrease at 12 weeks, compared with baseline (P ≤ 0.05). In the ST group, no changes in these parameters were observed during the 12-week period. During the 12-week period, significant differences in the pattern of change of LBM (P = 0.032), total ghrelin (P = 0.037), HOMA-IR (P = 0.040) and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (P = 0.011) over time were observed between the groups.
Conclusions: The findings of the present study suggest that an isocaloric high-protein diet can ameliorate body composition, metabolic profiles and energy metabolism during a 12-week scheduled resistance training program in untrained healthy young men. This trial was registered with ClinicalTrials.gov (no. NCT01714700).
Keywords: Hormone; Protein; Resistance exercise.