Milk at breakfast lowers the glucose level and increases satiety

Marco Verch / flickr

Consumption of dairy products with a high protein content (9.3%) at breakfast reduces blood glucose and increases satiety even at lunchtime, according to Canadian scientists. The researchers fed volunteers with grains and milk with different protein concentrations and measured their glycemia and satiety after breakfast and after lunch. The results showed that those who eat a breakfast rich in carbohydrates and protein-rich foods eat less during lunch and protect themselves against the risk of developing diabetes. Journal of Dairy Science.

The two main proteins in milk and other dairy products are whey protein and casein. These consist of different amino acids and have different effects on the body. For example, whey protein is responsible for early satiety and casein gives the same effect, but slightly later. The different types of milk are also differentiated by the concentrations of casein and whey protein.

The use of dairy products is recommended to reduce the risk of diabetes. However, little is known about how satiety and blood sugar levels (glucose levels in the blood) are regulated by the consumption of dairy products with a different percentage of protein and different concentrations of whey and casein protein during breakfast.

A group of scientists led by Douglas Goff from the University of Guelph, Canada, decided to investigate it. 32 people without metabolic disorders participated in their research, which was divided into five groups. Each of them was offered a breakfast consisting of a bowl of cereals and 250 ml of milk. The milk was differentiated by the concentration of protein (3.1% or 9.3%) and by the concentration of casein and whey protein (80:20 or 40:60); and the participants in the control group received water instead of milk with a milk substitute with a low whey protein content (0.3%) and without casein.

Before and after breakfast, the scientists measured the blood sugar levels of the participants and also evaluated their saturation. Two hours later the volunteers were offered a lunch: pizza (as much as they wanted). Quantity and glucose measurements were repeated every 140 and 200 minutes.

The researchers discovered that, compared to the control group, breakfast with all kinds of milk significantly reduced the blood glucose level, and the effect of protein-rich milk (9.3%) was higher. The effect of different concentrations of whey and casein protein was lower.

The authors concluded that the consumption of protein-rich dairy products at breakfast can be a useful strategy to reduce the risk of developing diabetes and other metabolic disorders, including obesity. It is also better not to pay attention to the content of different types of proteins.

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María Cervantes
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