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The amount of research supportive of increasing your intake of high quality protein to facilitate a greater maintenance of your body composition or to facilitate improvements continues to grow. While the majority of this research has focused upon studying their potential impact while resistance training and eating a diet which would facilitate muscle growth, a recent study examined the impact of whey protein with added essential amino acids as part of a weight loss or caloric restriction program (Coker, Miller et al. 2012).
Over an 8 week period, the study authors had obese individuals consume a meal-replacement primarily containing whey protein and essential amino acids along with another small meal in an attempt to promote weight loss. When the combination of whey protein and essential amino acids was ingested, the participants were found to lose more fat resulting in an overall improvement in their metabolism and body composition. The authors concluded that provided a meal-replacement which mainly contained whey protein and added essential amino acids during a low-calorie diet facilitates a modest reduction in lean tissue in conjunction with a significantly greater loss of fat.
Coker, R. H., S. Miller, et al. (2012). "Whey protein and essential amino acids promote the reduction of adipose tissue and increased muscle protein synthesis during caloric restriction-induced weight loss in elderly, obese individuals." Nutr J 11: 105.