Consumption of High-Leucine-Containing Protein Bar Following Breakfast Impacts Aminoacidemia and Subjective Appetite in Older Persons Academic Article uri icon

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  • ABSTRACT Background Limited data are available examining dietary interventions for optimizing protein and leucine intake to stimulate muscle protein synthesis (MPS) in older humans. Objectives We aimed to investigate the aminoacidemia and appetite responses of older adults after consuming breakfast, a meal frequently consumed with high-carbohydrate and below-par amounts of protein and leucine for stimulating MPS. Methods Five men and 3 women (means ± SD; age: 74 ± 7 y, BMI: 25.7 ± 4.9 kg/m2, fat- and bone-free mass: 63 ± 7 kg) took part in this experiment in which they consumed breakfasts with low-protein (LP = 13 ± 2 g), high-protein (HP = 32 ± 5 g), and LP followed by a protein- and leucine-enriched bar formulation 2 h later (LP + Bar = 29 ± 2 g). The LP, HP, and LP + Bar breakfast conditions contained 519 ± 86 kcal, 535 ± 83 kcal, and 739 ± 86 kcal, respectively. Blood samples were drawn for 6 h and analyzed for amino acid, insulin, and glucose concentrations. Visual analog scales were assessed for hunger, fullness, and desire to eat. Results The net AUC for essential amino acid (EAA) exposure was similar between the LP + Bar and HP conditions but greater in the HP condition compared with the LP condition. Peak leucinemia was higher in the LP + Bar condition compared with the HP, and both were greater than the LP condition. Net leucine exposure was similar between HP and LP + Bar, and both were greater than LP. Hunger was similarly reduced in LP + Bar and HP, and LP + Bar resulted in a greater hunger reduction than LP. Both LP + Bar and HP resulted in greater net fullness scores than LP. Conclusions Consuming our bar formulation increased blood leucine availability and net exposure to EAAs to a similar degree as consuming a high-protein meal. High-protein at breakfast results in a greater net exposure to EAAs and leucine, which could support MPS in older persons. This study was registered at as NCT03712761.


  • Traylor, Daniel A
  • Kamal, Michael
  • Nunes, Everson A
  • Prior, Todd
  • Gorissen, Stefan HM
  • Lees, Matthew
  • Gesel, Fran
  • Lim, Changhyun
  • Phillips, Stuart

publication date

  • June 4, 2021