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Long-term efficacy of soy-based meal replacements vs an individualized diet plan in obese type II DM patients: relative effects on weight loss, metabolic parameters, and C-reactive protein



Achieving significant weight loss and glycemic control in diabetic patients remains a challenging task.


This study compared the effects of a soy-based meal replacement (MR) plan vs an individualized diet plan (IDP; as recommended by the American Diabetes Association) on weight loss and metabolic profile.


A total of 104 subjects were randomized prospectively to the two treatments for a total of 12 months.


In all, 77 of the 104 subjects completed the study. Percentage weight loss in MR group (4.57±0.81%) was significantly greater (P<0.05) than in IDP group (2.25±0.72%). Fasting plasma glucose was significantly reduced in MR group (126.4±4.9 mg/dl) compared with IDP group (152.5±6.6 mg/dl, P<0.0001) at 6 months but not at 12 months. Controlling for baseline levels, hemoglobin Alc level improved by 0.49±0.22% for those receiving MR when compared to IDP group (P<0.05). A greater number of subjects in MR group reduced their use of sulfonylureas (P<0.0001) and metformin (P<0.05) as compared to IDP group. High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) decreased −26.3% (P=0.019) in MR group compared to −7.06% (P=0.338) in IDP group at 6 months. Similar changes were observed at 12 months with MR groups, with hs-CRP decreasing by −25.0% (P=0.019) compared to −18.7% (P=0.179) in IDP group.


This study demonstrates that MR is a viable strategy for weight reduction in diabetic patients, resulting in beneficial changes in measures of glycemic control and reduction of medications.

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Correspondence to Z Li.

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Guarantor: Z Li.

Contributors: ZL and KH—manuscript preparation and data analysis. PS, MB and GT—data collection and patient evaluation. SD, H-JW and RE—statistical analysis. YL—data collection and processing. DH—principle investigator, manuscript preparation and data analysis.

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Li, Z., Hong, K., Saltsman, P. et al. Long-term efficacy of soy-based meal replacements vs an individualized diet plan in obese type II DM patients: relative effects on weight loss, metabolic parameters, and C-reactive protein. Eur J Clin Nutr 59, 411–418 (2005).

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  • meal replacement
  • obesity
  • DM
  • weight loss
  • C-reactive protein

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