‘Protein hunger’ drives overeating, large-scale population study shows

Study confirms that processed foods key to rising obesity 

The modern pallet’s preference for highly processed and refined foods over a protein-rich diet is a key contributor to the high obesity rates in the Western world. 

A year-long study of the dietary habits of 9,341 Australians has backed growing evidence that highly processed and refined foods are the leading contributor of rising obesity rates in the Western world.

The new study, in the latest issue of the journal Obesity conducted by the University of Sydney’s Charles Perkins Centre (CPC), was based on a national nutrition and physical activity survey undertaken by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), and further backs the ‘Protein Leverage Hypothesis’. 

Those who consumed lower amounts of protein in their first meal of the day went on to increase their overall food intake in subsequent meals, whereas those who received the recommended amount of protein did not – and, in fact, declined their food intake throughout the day.

“The protein mechanism in appetite is a revolutionary insight. Obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease – they’re all driven by diet, and we have to use what we’re learning to bring them under control”, said the researchers.

Image credit- shutterstock

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