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Limiting Protein Intake Before Surgery Helps Avoid Dangerous Complications

January 25, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Reducing the amount of protein or amino acids consumed before surgery can reduce the possibility of dangerous complications such as heart attack or stroke, a U.S. study has found. For the study, two groups of mice were fed either a normal diet or one lacking certain amino acids for two weeks. Both groups were then subjected to surgical stress that affected the kidneys or liver. Forty percent of the mice that ate the normal diet died after the surgery; all of the protein-restricted mice survived. The researchers said the results are significant because they isolate  protein as an important substance to eliminate from the diet before surgery to avoid complications.
Wei Peng et al., "Surgical Stress Resistance Induced by Single Amino Acid Deprivation Requires Gcn2 in Mice", Science Translational Medicine, January 25, 2012, © American Association for the Advancement of Science
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