Effect of dietary protein on bed-rest-related changes in whole-body-protein synthesis

Charles A. Stuart, Robert E. Shangraw, Edward J. Peters, Robert R. Wolfe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations


To determine whether increasing dietary protein could exert a beneficial effect on bed-rest-related protein catabolism, two groups of normal subjects were subjected to 7 d of bed rest while taking isocaloric diets containing either 0.6 or 1.0 g protein·kg body wt-1·d-1. Whole-body-leucine turnover, leucine oxidation, and nonoxidative leucine disappearance were measured by use of a constant infusion of 1-13C-leucine. Before bed rest, the higher-protein diet resulted in a 14% decrease in whole-body-leucine turnover and a 28% decrease in leucine oxidation, but net nonoxidative leucine disappearance was not different on the two diets. A 24% decrease in nonoxidative leucine disappearance was seen in subjects assigned to the lower-protein diet, who had been on bed rest, but on the higher-protein diet, leucine kinetics were unchanged by bed rest. Bed rest does not cause an increase in whole-body-protein breakdown, but decreased whole-body-protein synthesis is demonstrable when dietary protein is low. This decrease is prevented by a higher dietary amount of protein.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)509-514
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1990
Externally publishedYes


  • Bed rest
  • Dietary protein
  • Insulin
  • Leucine kinetics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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