One of the weight reduction strategies involves use of different types of diets. The most popular one is the use of high protein diets. Proteins are polymers made up of amino acids. There are twenty different amino acids. It is the various permutations and combinations from these twenty different amino acids that different proteins are formed. Since different proteins are having different amino acid composition, their effect on weight loss also would be different.
To test this theory, a study was carried out by the Human nutrition Research center in the US and the study involved 90 obese men and women. The average weight of the men was around 88 kilograms while that of the women was 76 kilograms. These overweight people were divided into three groups. The average calorie intake per day during this study period of six months was 2200 calories. Each group was supplied with a drink twice a day at breakfast and dinner and the nature of the drink was not disclosed to the individuals. The first group was given a protein drink containing soy protein, the second group, a drink containing whey protein and the third group was given a carbohydrate drink.
Cow’s milk contains two types of proteins-whey protein (20%) and casein (80%). Whey is the liquid left behind during the preparation of cheese after the removal of the protein casein and milk fat. Whey protein is actually a mixture of globular proteins that are soluble. This is unlike casein which is sparingly soluble.
After six months, the groups were analyzed for body weight and waist size. The group which was given carbohydrate diet actually gained weight while the individuals who took the soy protein drink did not show any change in weight. What was surprising was the finding that the obese persons who took the whey protein drink exhibited a fall in weight. It has been shown that whey protein has the ability to decrease the secretion of the hunger hormone ghrelin. Ghrelin is a hormone secreted from the stomach. It is called the hunger hormone because it stimulates the appetite. Thus, the suppression of ghrelin would lead to decreased food intake.