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Weight loss without losing muscle mass in pre-obese and obese subjects induced by a high-soy-protein diet


OBJECTIVE: To determine change of weight, body composition, metabolic and hormonal parameters induced by different intervention protocols.

DESIGN: Randomized, controlled study including participants exhibiting a BMI between 27.5 and 35. Three different interventions containing lifestyle education (LE-G), or a substitutional diet containing a high-soy-protein low-fat diet with (SD/PA-G) or without (SD-G) a guided physical activity program.

SUBJECTS: A total of 90 subjects (mean weight 89.9 kg; mean BMI 31.5), randomly assigned to one of three treatment groups.

MEASUREMENTS: Change in body weight, fat mass and lean body mass measured with the Bod Pod® device at baseline, 6 weeks and 6 months; change in metabolic and hormonal parameters.

RESULTS: In all, 83 subjects completed the 6-months study. BMI dropped highly significantly in all groups (LE-G: −2.2±1.43 kg/m2; SD-G: −3.1±1.29 kg/m2; SD/PA-G: −3.0±1.29 kg/m2). Subjects in the SD-G and in the SD/PA-G lost more weight during the 6-months study (−8.9±3.9; −8.9±3.9 kg) than did those in the LE-G (−6.2±4.2 kg), and had a greater decrease in fat mass (−8.8±4.27; −9.4±4.54 kg) than those in the LE-G (−6.6±4.59 kg). In contrast, no significant intraindividual or between-group changes in the fat-free mass were seen. In all groups, metabolic parameters showed an improvement in glycemic control and lipid profile.

CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest that a high-soy-protein and low-fat diet can improve the body composition in overweight and obese people, losing fat but preserving muscle mass.

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Deibert, P., König, D., Schmidt-Trucksaess, A. et al. Weight loss without losing muscle mass in pre-obese and obese subjects induced by a high-soy-protein diet. Int J Obes 28, 1349–1352 (2004).

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  • body composition
  • body fat
  • soy protein
  • nutrition
  • exercise

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