Experience and acceptability of diets of varying protein content and glycemic index in an obese cohort: results from the Diogenes trial

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To investigate acceptability and tolerability of diets of different protein and glycemic index (GI) content aimed at weight maintenance following a phase of rapid weight loss, as part of a large pan-European dietary intervention trial.


The Diogenes study (www.diogenes-eu.org) consisted of an initial 8-week rapid weight-loss phase (800–1000kcal/day), followed by a 6-month weight maintenance intervention with five different diets varying in protein and GI content. Measurement of a range of outcomes relating to experience of the Diogenes diets in terms of acceptability, experience and mood were recorded via end of day questionnaires throughout the study.


Weight change during the initial weight loss phase weakly, but positively correlated with acceptability of the programme (r range = −0.08 to 0.2, P≤0.05, n=685 on four of five dimensions). Success at weight maintenance positively correlated with acceptance of the programme (r range = −0.21 to −0.34, P < 0.001, n = 540 for all five dimensions). The diets with higher protein content were more acceptable than the low protein (LP) diets, however, no differences between the high vs low GI diets were found concerning acceptability and tolerability.


Results suggest that moderately high protein diets, compared with LP diets, are more acceptable diets for weight control in overweight individuals.

European Journal of Clinical Nutrition (2013) 67, 990–995; doi:10.1038/ejcn.2013.99; published online 19 June 2013

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