Tailor-made protein meals can help prevent a fatty liver

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is one of the most common chronic liver diseases worldwide. But milk protein can help against it, a study has shown.  

A quarter of the adult population in Germany over 30 years of age is affected and every third overweight child suffers from this disease, and the trend is rising. In addition to the liver, the negative effects affect the entire body, because fat deposits in the liver are among the main causes of type 2 diabetes mellitus.  

Clinical studies have shown positive effects on body weight, inflammation and insulin sensitivity with a high protein diet. A research team from the Charité and the TU Berlin is currently pursuing this approach: The researchers are jointly investigating the health effects of tailor-made milk protein meals on the glucose metabolism using endocrine and other metabolic parameters. In particular, they want to take a close look at the influence of a breakfast rich in milk protein on the further course of blood sugar. 

Many milk products are characterised by a high protein content. Milk proteins are an ideal basis for effective fatty liver therapy and a protein-based product caused a 50% reduction in insulin requirements at the subsequent lunchtime meal. This phenomenon, the so-called second meal effect, which is to be examined in more detail as part of the project, is probably dependent on the composition and absorption of amino acids.  

The milk protein casein and whey protein differ both in their amino acid composition and in the rate of absorption. A synergistic effect of fast, soluble whey proteins and slow caseins can be assumed – which paves the way for tailor-made milk protein compositions. 

The results of this project, among many others, will show, which casein-whey protein ratio is most effective in a metabolic syndrome and whether the intake of the composition at breakfast is particularly beneficial.  

For many people, who already suffer from fatty liver or want to prevent it, the consumption of tailor-made dairy products may be a sensible approach in the future.

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