Despite suggestions that high-protein diets could have a negative impact on kidney function, and in particular on glomerular filtration rate (GFR), a new study suggests this may not be the case.
Researchers analysed data from 28 randomised controlled trials dating from 1975 to 2016, examining the effects of higher protein (HP) diets (≥1.5 g/kg body weight or ≥20% energy intake or ≥100 g protein/d) verses normal or lower protein (NLP; ≥5% less energy intake from protein/d compared with HP group) intake on GFR in healthy individuals.
Analyses were conducted using post-intervention GFR and the change in GFR from pre-intervention to post-intervention.
The authors said there was a "trivial effect" for GFR to be greater in the HP group compared with the NLP group when GFR was examined using only post-intervention data. However, when the change in GFR from baseline was compared, there was no difference between the HP and NLP group.
“Given the proposed advantages of consuming HP diets to promote muscle hypertrophy during resistance training, high-quality weight loss during energy restriction, and maintenance of muscle mass with aging, the finding that an HP diet does not negatively affect kidney function is of relevance,” the authors said.
The research is published in the Journal of Nutrition.