T Nation

Eliminating Leucine to Lose Weight

I hesitated to post this. Don’t shoot the messenger.

edited for spelling (hessitated ==> hesitated… doh!)

^ another study kinda sorta refutes that last one though: “Leucine Supplementation of Drinking Water Does Not Alter Susceptibility to Diet-Induced Obesity in Mice”

Let’s get to the bottom of this…

sure, cut leucine, lose some muscle mass while dieting, makes sense :wink:

I’ve been supplementing with it 2-3/day while dieting down with the GSD. Seems to be working quite well. I’m on the 2nd run of the diet, can report later on.

1st time through lost 17 lbs fat, gained 1.5 LBM over the course of 8 weeks (using Bod Pod for measurements)

[quote]jehovasfitness wrote:
sure, cut leucine, lose some muscle mass while dieting, makes sense :wink:

I’ve been supplementing with it 2-3/day while dieting down with the GSD. Seems to be working quite well. I’m on the 2nd run of the diet, can report later on.

1st time through lost 17 lbs fat, gained 1.5 LBM over the course of 8 weeks (using Bod Pod for measurements)[/quote]

I’m just sharing the science, not making reccomendations. Like I said don’t shoot the messenger.

I appreciate your results though and I don’t debate them.

First of all the study is on rats, (which were not doing exercise aside from what they usually do as rats) but the study does state that with a leu depleted diet, there is a reduction in fat and weight without affecting proportion of lean mass.

What is interesting is the mechanisms they discovered through which leucine deprivation affected fat loss. THIS is the interesting part IMO. Perhaps a means or strategy can be developed based on this info to alter fat loss. Perhaps leucine timing, i.e. dose leucine around weight time, but have no (including protein) around cardio time? Perhaps dosing with competitive aminos around cardio time? Who knows really. Those are just some off the wall ideas, so don’t anyone go and try them! Well if you want to go ahead, but I’m just saying that they are just based on a hair brained theory I literally just had. The whole idea of controlling bodyweight by manipulating macronutrients (including specific micros like different aminos, different fatty acids, and different carb sources) is really quite interesting and is the forefront of supplement research IMO, therefore studies like this cannot be ingnored (Biotest is all over this forefront by the way - although I’m not saying they have to or should change anything based on this study, it’s just important to have this on their radar screen). FWIW other studies have shown that arginine and glutamine can also have significant effects on lipid metabolism and glucose utilization (1,2)

Plus it’s impossible to actually cut leucine and still get adequate protein. Almost no protein containing food is completely deficient of leucine, and the study (which I have read) does not describe the amino acid profile of the food anyway, and I have no idea how they accomplished this.

Definitely the study does not make clear what effect adding additional leucine to the diet would have as you have described JF, although the other two I posted do address this – and they present a conflicting view.

The bottom line is that you should probably not make any changes to your diet strategy based on this info but you can if you want. I’m just sharing the info just because it was interesting.

  1. “L-Glutamine Supplementation of a High Fat Diet Reduces Body Weight and Attenuates Hyperglycemia and Hyperinsulinemia in C57BL/6J Mice”
    http://jn.nutrition.org/cgi/content/abstract/126/1/273?maxtoshow=&hits=10&RESULTFORMAT=&andorexactfulltext=and&searchid=1&FIRSTINDEX=0&sortspec=relevance&volume=126&firstpage=273&resourcetype=HWCIT

  2. “Dietary L-Arginine Supplementation Reduces White Fat Gain and Enhances Skeletal Muscle and Brown Fat Masses in Diet-Induced Obese Rats”
    http://jn.nutrition.org/cgi/content/abstract/139/2/230

Weight Is Not Equal To Fat.

They don’t explain/cite the food source at all?

I was going to add that the caged mice are not subjected to the exercise regimens some of us do so this is one important thing to consider.

It isn’t logically valid to extrapolate - not that you did - that if reducing to zero gives one effect, then increasing above a typical normal value would give the opposite effect.

That is to say, even if it were the case that in man eliminating leucine from the diet (aside from being unsustainable) might increase thermogenesis in BAT, which is not very important in man, that would not mean that increasing leucine above typical dietary values must decrease thermogenesis in such tissue below normal values.

Talk about taking something out of context – this is really reaching.

[quote]Rusty Barbell wrote:
They don’t explain/cite the food source at all?

I was going to add that the caged mice are not subjected to the exercise regimens some of us do so this is one important thing to consider.[/quote]
All they said about the food source was that mice were given free range (could eat as much as they wanted) to a food source that was obtained from some lab (in New Jersey I think). The mice given the Leu depleted food voluntarily chose to eat less (15% less) than the control group. I think they also had a 3rd group of mice that were given the amount of food (calorically matched # of calories) to what the Leu deprived group chose to eat.

[quote]HK24719 wrote:
Talk about taking something out of context[/quote]
Yeah, perhaps the leucine timing thing I mentioned was not valid, but in general I thought this article was pretty interesting and worth mentioning. Have any helpful thoughts about the article or did you just want to come into the thread to tear it down?

[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
It isn’t logically valid to extrapolate - not that you did…[/quote]
Indeed. Very good point and thanks for clarifying that point better than I did. I did post links to the other studies (if they showed up – i’ll check) which I posted to clarify this exact point.

Essentially, the one study showed that leucine actually prevented excess fat gain. Of course there are more relevant studies out there to help prove this point as well. I’ll dig some up.

Only the abstract is free ya?

Not only is it in mice, but it was posted in a diabetic journal. Googling the mouse strain didn’t indicate that the mice were diabetic, but still… Plus, the abstract notes a change in brown adipose tissue, which is a big deal in mice, but nearly nonexistent in humans.

Combined with the impractibility of removing leucine from the diet, I think we’re still about a brazillion years from practical application of this factoid.

Interesting, nontheless.

[quote]EasyRhino wrote:
Only the abstract is free ya?[/quote]
Yeah I have it though if you have any specific questions that I don’t answer herein.

[quote]Not only is it in mice, but it was posted in a diabetic journal. Googling the mouse strain didn’t indicate that the mice were diabetic, but still…[/quote] The specifics on the type of mice were not further described in the article, but googling them shows that “Overall, C57BL/6 mice breed well, are long-lived, and have a low susceptibility to tumors.”

[quote]Plus, the abstract notes a change in brown adipose tissue, which is a big deal in mice, but nearly nonexistent in humans.[/quote] BAT was not the only significant change.

Combined with the impractibility of removing leucine from the diet, I think we’re still about a brazillion years from practical application of this factoid.[/quote] True. It’s certainly not practical right now.

[quote]Interesting, nontheless.[/quote] True

The study did in fact show significant changes in WAT and BAT. The mice did have significant reductions in abdominal fat after all (while maintaining fat free mass).

The study suggests that LEU deprivation mobilizes fat through the cAMP-PKA-HSL pathway (it raises cAMP). Additionally it was shown that LEU deprivation dramatically upregulates Adrb3 which is the main isoform of beta-adrenoreceptors in WAT.

I’ll share more but I gotta run.

Very interesting, but I think with all the ways to lose fat that this one would have more ‘costs’ to it.

The rats were sedentary, so the protein turnover of them vs. active humans on a weight training regime may be a variable which completely reverses the LBM ‘preservation’ in that study.

And if you want UPC1 upregulated, just take some fucoxanthin.

Very true about protein turn over. Nonetheless, there was a significant difference between the groups. Although you and everyone is right that trying to directly implement this approach is not possible. It’s still interesting though.

Also, I’ve never heard of fucoxanthin. Seems to be limited data on it though from my bried search. Thanks for sharing. I’ll look into it.

Limited but promising, I have trialled it for a while and, if you will take an anecdote, it seems to be quite effective. (Of course it appears to be fat soluble and needs to ‘saturate’ body stores, kinda cool, but the benefits are delayed).

Great thing about uncouplers is that you can feel if they work or not :slight_smile: