In their quest for arriving at intelligent ways to conquer the ubiquitous problem of the bulge, scientists from Britain have narrowed down on the benefits of protein rich diet vis a vis carbohydrate or fat laden diet, that can effectively reduce hunger. This results in consumption of fewer calories that wards off obesity.
The investigators report that consuming more protein activates and enhances the quantity of peptide YY (PYY), a hormone that actually curbs hunger.
Study leader Rachel Batterham, of University College London, said "We've now found that increasing the protein content of the diet augments the body's own PYY, helping to reduce hunger and aid weight loss."
The research team analyzed the effects of a high protein diet on obese as wells as people with normal weight. The researchers found that a high protein diet triggered the release of PYY in higher levels, which was not the case when the diet was high on carbohydrate or fat. Higher levels of PYY effectively brought down the pangs of hunger, resulting in the consumption of fewer calories.
This finding was further substantiated after detailed studies on rodents, where It was found, enhanced levels of PYY caused the rodents to actually eat less and gain less weight as compared to the mice who consumed normal levels of protein. In contrast, genetically modified mice that were incapable of producing PYY and resistant to the influence of a high protein diet were found to eat more and turn obese. This led scientists to be confident about the link between protein and PYY, and consequently its effects on hunger.
Further research on this subject would be necessary before a specific high protein diet could be advised, the researchers said.