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The heated debate, within diet circles, that began a few years ago and continues today is over the effectiveness of the high-protein, low-carbohydrate, type diet versus its counterpart, the high-carbohydrate, low-fat diet. To the delight of the Atkins diet enthusiasts, recent studies The Venus Factor System Review have suggested that a diet high in protein and low in fat has a greater effect on diet induced thermogenesis (calorie burning) than a high carbohydrate low fat diet. Before we go further we need to familiarize you with a few terms we will be discussing in this article. Your total daily energy expenditure (TDEE) is the total energy your body burns in a day. TDEE consists of 3 components: diet induced thermogenesis (DIT), basal metabolism, and physical activity.
DIT is the increase in the body's temperature that is caused by the digestion and absorption of a meal. This rise in temperature results in calorie burning. Yes, we actually burn calories simply by eating and scientists have long believed that DIT may be a factor, in reducing obesity; and that obese people may have defective DITs - although this hasn't been proven yet. Once scientists identify the link between DIT and obesity on a molecular level, it could essentially pave the way for the development of drugs in the treatment of obesity. That's still however, in the future. In a recent study at the University of Arizona, published by the American College of Nutrition, a group of young healthy women were given 2 sets of diets. (1) One diet was high in protein and low in fat and the other was high in carbohydrate and low in fat.
Scientists were trying to compare the thermic effect (DIT) of protein versus carbohydrate during the digestion and absorption of meals. Keep in mind, as the body's temperature increases (by DIT), so does the number of burned calories. Evidence from this study showed The Venus Factor System that postprandial (following a meal) thermogenesis increased 100% more with the high-protein low-fat diet versus the high-carb low-fat diet. Although protein had a greater effect on DIT, the study did not evaluate weight loss or the long term effects of this type of diet. The results did suggest that this type of diet may have a positive effect on weight loss. Scientists concluded that a diet high in protein, moderate in carbohydrate and low in fat contents may promote a higher rate of weight loss compared to the high carbohydrate, low fat diet.
On the other hand, they also warn that high protein diets may affect kidney function in those that have kidney conditions, but not in healthy individuals. Furthermore, they recommend daily protein intake should not exceed 2 grams per 1 kilogram of body weight. The American daily average is 1 gram per 1 kilogram. Further studies are required to assess the long term effects of high protein, low fat dieting. It is important to keep in mind, however, that DIT or the thermic effect of a meal only represents 3-10% of total daily energy expenditure (TDEE). So we must keep things in perspective. Basal or resting metabolism accounts for up to 70% of TDEE and energy expenditure from exercise is responsible for the rest. Logic dictates, therefore that these two take precedence over DIT.