A low meal frequency improves 24h metabolic and gene expression profiles in subjects with impaired glucose tolerance (PBMC)



Meal frequency regulates postprandial glucose and insulin responses, which may affect substrate partitioning and thus weight control. This study investigated the effects of meal frequency on the metabolic and transcriptomic profiles in subjects with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT). Eleven IGT (2h glucose; 9.0±0.3mmol/L) men stayed 2x 36 hours in a respiration chamber to measure substrate partitioning. All subjects randomly received two isoenergetic diets with a low meal frequency (3x-LFr) or a high meal frequency (14x-HFr) consisting of 15 En% prot, 30 En% fat, and 55 En% carb. Total glucose output (AUC), carbohydrate oxidation and whole body RQ significantly decreased, and FFA levels increased in the LFr diet. The HFr diet resulted in an up-regulation in expression of genes involved in immune function and inflammation after 24h in PBMCs and muscle tissue. Expression of genes involved in PPAR signalling, OXPHOS, and glutathione metabolism were up-regulated in the HFr diet in muscle tissue only. In conclusion, the LFr diet improved the metabolic and transcriptomic profiles, and appetite control compared to the HFr diet. This suggests that a LFr diet might be an effective dietary strategy with anti-inflammatory characteristics to increase metabolic flexibility and body weight control in IGT subjects.
Date made available1 Nov 2020
PublisherWageningen University


  • Homo sapiens
  • Expression profiling by array

Accession numbers

  • GSE52026
  • PRJNA226235
  • GSE52028
  • PRJNA226232

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