Weve all heard that diets higher in protein might help us speed up our metabolism. Now new research might be backing that up sort of. A study presented at the Obesity Society Annual Meeting in Boston, US, in October found that high and normal protein diets are linked to higher metabolism and more storage of lean muscle mass compared with low-protein diets.
Rather than conducting a weight-loss study, our focus was to explore whether high or low protein diets might lead to less weight gain when consuming excess calories due to the ability of the body to burn extra energy with a high-protein diet, said author Elizabeth Frost. What we found was that study participants all gained similar amounts of weight regardless of diet composition; however, there was a vast difference in how the body stored the excess calories. Those who consumed normal and high protein diets stored 45 per cent of the excess calories as lean tissue, or muscle mass, while those on the low- protein diet stored 95 per cent of the excess calories as fat.
However, the research also found that the increase in metabolism is not sustainable for a long period of time, suggesting the body cant be trained to permanently speed up the metabolism.