Protein shakes are the go-to item for bodybuilders.
But new research suggests they could have benefits for the general population too – not just those looking to bulk up.
Eating whey protein, which can be bought as a powder to be made into a smoothie, before breakfast could help to prevent type 2 diabetes, scientists claim.
The substance, also found in milk and cheese, additionally improved blood sugar levels in a small study on obese men with the condition.
Researchers from Newcastle University conducted two studies to assess the effects of whey protein.
Their first experiment involved giving 12 obese men either a 30 minute rest or a light treadmill session for the same time frame, The Diabetes Times reports.
The participants were then either given 20g of the supplement or a placebo before consuming a carbohydrate-filled breakfast.
Blood sugar levels, which normally spike after eating, were found to be controlled as a result of the whey protein.
In the second study, 11 men suffering from type 2 diabetes were given 15g of the supplement.
And in the findings, which were presented at the Diabetes UK Professional Conference, they found their blood sugars were kept under control.
They were also found to be more full, helping to curb their desire to have a snack before lunch.
Study author Dr Daniel West told the news website: ‘We know that high blood glucose levels after eating can contribute to poor blood glucose management and can also be detrimental to cardiovascular health.
‘We’ve shown that consuming small amount of whey protein before a meal could help people avoid those high blood glucose levels and may help them to feel more satisfied after mealtimes.’
This comes after research in October found that drinking a protein supplement could help to reduce the risk of heart disease.
Whey protein was found to lower blood pressure and cholesterol as well as making blood vessels healthier by researchers at the University of Reading.
Those taking the supplement were found to have an eight per cent less chance of developing a deadly heart condition.
Source : – DailyMail