Topical Area: Aging and Chronic Disease
Objectives : This study examined the intake of animal-based protein and total protein in middle-aged men and compared with AMDR requirements. Not only the amount, but the quality and type of dietary protein are important in assessing risk for sarcopenia. Leucine, an essential amino acid is effective at stimulating muscle protein synthesis and is found in beef.
Methods : This research utilized a non-experimental, cross-sectional design. Setting: Data were collected at a research university in the Upper-Midwestern United States. Participants: Forty-one men were recruited and participated in the study. Measurements: Dietary intake was estimated using both a three-day food diary and the Arizona Food Frequency Questionnaire (AFFQ). Food records were carefully data-entered into Food Processor Nutrition Analysis Software (ESHA Research) by a registered dietitian. Additionally, the AFFQ was utilized to assess trends in protein consumption and overall intake over the past three months.
Results : According to the AFFQ, the average total and animal-based protein intake of the men in this study was 98 and 56 g/day, respectively which is above the RDA recommended 42 g/day. The AFFQ-estimated range among participants in the total and animal-based protein intake was 30-170 and 15-118 g, respectively/day. This translates to a mean 17.2-17.0% of total daily energy. The AMDR for protein in adults is 10-35%. ESHA results averaged 16.6% protein calories. The AFFQ estimated the leucine intake at a mean of 6.9 g/day, with top 10 sources of protein animal-based. A recommended amount of 7 to 9 g/day has been suggested.
Conclusions : This study was unique in the fact that middle aged men were recruited as the assessment group. This small study was part of a larger study to look for relationships among dietary intake and functional ability. Most studies in the area of functional abilities consider only older adults. In this study, the researchers found that this group of middle-aged healthy men was in the lower range of the AMDR even though the RDA was exceeded. Finally, their leucine intake was adequate.
Funding Sources :
This study was funded by the Beef Checkoff, through the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, Minnesota Beef Council.