Protein is one of the nutrition essentials needed to maintain a healthy diet. It is used to build and repair body tissue and keep your hair, nails, and skin healthy. It also helps to boost your immune system. Beyond those benefits, research indicates eating lean, high-quality protein can help people with type 2 diabetes lose or maintain weight and manage blood glucose.
In a recent study, participants consumed either a high animal protein diet – including lean meat and dairy foods or a high-plant protein diet for six weeks. The composition of both diets was 30% protein, 40% carbohydrate and 30% fat. At the end of the study, A1C percentage decreased in both groups (the A1C test reflects your average blood glucose level over the past three months). Moreover, insulin sensitivity improved (how sensitive the body is to the effects of insulin) in only the animal-protein diet group.