Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Protein drinks before meals help diabetics’ blood sugar levels, study finds

Whey protein drinks before a meal can help diabetics control their blood sugar levels, according to new research (PA)
Whey protein drinks before a meal can help diabetics control their blood sugar levels, according to new research (PA)

Whey protein drinks before a meal can help diabetics control their blood sugar levels, according to new research.

Scientists believe the drinks slow down how quickly food is digested and stimulate hormones to prevent sugar levels rising so quickly.

In the Newcastle University study, people with Type 2 diabetes drank a pre-made shot containing a low dose of whey protein before eating a normal meal.

They were monitored for a week as they went about normal daily life.

The same participants were given control shots containing no protein for a further week, and had blood tests to measure the results against each other.

The test showed that glucose levels were much better controlled when taking the whey supplement before meals, with an average of an extra two hours per day of normal blood sugar levels compared with the no protein week.

Dr Daniel West, principal investigator at Newcastle University’s Human Nutrition Research Centre and Diabetes Research Group, said: “While previous studies for a few hours in the lab have shown the potential for this dietary intervention, this is the first time that people have been monitored as they go about normal life.

“We believe the whey protein works in two ways, firstly, by slowing down how quickly food passes through the digestive system and secondly, by stimulating a number of important hormones that prevent the blood sugars climbing so high.

Heaped measuring scoop of whey protein powder
People with Type 2 diabetes drank a pre-made shot containing a low dose of whey protein before eating a normal meal (Alamy/PA)

“As we see growing numbers of people around the world developing diabetes, investigating the potential of alternatives to drugs such as food supplements becomes more important.”

PhD student Kieran Smith, who oversaw the glucose monitoring and analysed the data, said: “People were able to stick to the regime and liked the idea of having a convenient, tasty, small pre-made drink that could be carried with them and taken before meals.”

The team intend to further explore the benefits of non-medical interventions, running the study on a larger scale and for a longer period of up to six months.

They also plan to look at alternative proteins, such as those that come from plant sources such as peas, fungi and potatoes, to open up options for vegan and religious dietary needs.