Recently, the American Heart Association (AHA) released new guidelines regarding the high-protein diets so popular with consumers. In those guidelines, the AHA said such diets “aren’t proven effective for long-term weight loss” and “also pose serious health threats” if followed for any length of time. One specific health threat cited was an increased risk of kidney disorders.
Now, a new study by researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School says that high-protein intake is not associated with a loss of kidney function in women with normal function to begin with. Over an 11-year period, the researchers studied more than 1,600 women who were part of the ongoing Nurses’ Health Study (ages 42 to 68). The investigators found that the danger of kidney problems from a high-protein diet was limited to those women with existing kidney problems. The study authors concluded that “high total protein intake, particularly high intake of nondairy animal protein, may accelerate renal function decline in women with mild renal insufficiency.”
For more information about today’s most popular high-protein diets, be sure to read the upcoming July-August issue of this magazine.