For greater appetite control, choose whole foods over liquid calories. Whey protein is greater for boosting protein intake while reducing hunger hormones such as ghrelin. Choose low energy density foods such as fruits and vegetables to reduce calories. Increase your intake of soluble fiber to reduce appetite.


  • The best way to learn how to control your appetite is to consume more whole foods, less liquid calories, and more protein.
  • The best diet for weight control should consist of whole foods. Whole foods have a greater effect on reducing appetite than liquids.
  • Thicker liquids have a greater effect on reducing appetite.
  • Whey and casein both are equally good for decreasing appetite.


Many dieters and fitness competitors know the benefits of consuming whey protein to lose weight and gain muscle. When dieting, swap your protein shakes out for whole food to reduce feeling hungry. Studies show that consuming whey protein shakes with a calorie-restricted diet can be beneficial for preserving muscle mass and reducing body fat; however, many competitors swap out protein shakes for whole foods during the contest prep.


There is strong evidence that the sensation of satiety is stronger after whole foods compared to liquids.(1) One study compared a dietary supplement Slim-Fast shake containing 220 calories with 24 grams of protein, to a Slim-Fast bar with 220 calories with 20 grams of protein.

After four hours, hunger was 14% higher after the liquid shake, whereas hunger remained below baseline for the protein bar of similar calories. They also found lower ghrelin responses after the solid meal than the liquid meal.(2) This suggests that the best appetite suppressant will be whole food based compared to a liquid.


You can make your homemade appetite suppressant drink using a thick viscous fluid such as an oatmeal consistency. Researchers compared whole steamed chicken breast to a chicken breast that was blended drink before a meal to determine if solid or liquid proteins affected reducing appetite.

The researchers found that solid protein meals had a greater impact on reducing appetite than liquid protein meals despite being the same calories and protein.(3) A literature review on food viscosity found that foods that were harder, chunkier, etc., had a greater effect on satiety.(4) The thickness of a liquid is better for appetite suppression than a less dense liquid-based drink (i.e., watery).


One study had two types of rice porridge, one thick and the other thin. The thicker porridge resulted in greater appetite suppression, and subjects consumed fewer calories from the thin porridge. Compared with the think version, the thicker porridge was consumed slower, leading to an 11-13% reduction in energy intake. (5)


Whey protein is one of the best foods for belly fat loss. Whey protein is one of the best over-the-counter appetite suppressants. It’s appetite suppression is mediated by an increase in the levels of appetite-suppressing hormones Glucagon-Like Peptide 1 (GLP-1), Cholecystokinin (CCK), pancreatic polypeptide (PP), and glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP).(6-9)

Researchers have found that 45 grams of whey protein suppressed the appetite-stimulating hormones CCK, GLP-1, and PYY compared to 45 grams of carbohydrates. (7)

To further support this appetite-suppressing effect of whey protein, researchers gave subjects various dosages of whey protein (5, 10, 20, and 40 grams) before eating a pizza buffet. Only dosages of 20 and 40 grams of whey protein reduced food intake. Whey protein has also been found to be superior to casein for suppressing appetite short term.(9)

Supplement companies have released diet whey protein which is whey protein, with other fat burners such as CLA or green tea. Keep in mind there has never been a peer-reviewed study to show that diet whey protein is better than a standard whey protein supplement for fat loss.


That is not a typo, blended tuna protein shakes!! In one study, subjects received four blended meals: whey, tuna, turkey, or egg albumin. How would you like some blended tuna in water? They each consumed different liquids and were allowed to eat at a buffet four hours after consuming the protein drink.

The subjects ate less when they had the whey protein drink before the buffet than turkey, tuna, and liquid egg meals. There was a strong relationship between the whey protein shake increasing insulin levels and the number of calories eaten at lunch. Thus, whey protein produced a greater insulin response, reduced appetite, and decreased calories consumed compared to the other proteins.(10) To lose belly fat, consuming whey protein is a no-brainer for appetite control and the other health benefits whey protein provides.


Casein has been shown to reduce appetite in the long term; however, there is no difference between whey and casein in reducing body fat.(11) In a 12-week calorie-restricted study, subjects received 50 grams of whey protein, casein, or a carbohydrate drink.At the end of the study, both the whey and casein drinks resulted in equal losses of body fat and trends towards greater lean mass increases than the carbohydrate drink.(12) There is no superiority in either protein for body composition; choose the protein (i.e., whey or casein) you prefer. So both whey and casein are equally good fat-loss foods to burn fat.

“In a study by Haun et al., participants were instructed to increase their protein intake by 25g each week with whey protein supplementation. The high whey protein group had a greater fat loss than the other groups. The authors hypothesized that this was related to the satiety-inducing effects of whey protein consumption. ”

— HAUN ET AL. (17)

There is nothing wrong with consuming whey protein or casein drinks, but when possible, consume whole foods over liquid calories while dieting. A protein shake can offer a lower calorie replacement than food in some situations. For example, 40 g of casein-based protein before bed would be roughly 185-200 calories, but it would be necessary to consume 1025 ml of low-fat milk (359 kcal) or 1176 ml of low-fat yogurt (659 kcal) for the same protein.(13)

In a study of bodybuilders, 57% reported supplements as their primary protein base. Protein supplements provided 31% of protein intake on average.(14) Based on the research, whole food sources can significantly reduce appetite more than liquids.


Some people have suggested that you can have as much protein as you want during dieting. Although protein in excess has not been shown to increase body fat, protein still has calories. Protein contains 4 calories per gram. Losing body fat is a process of being in a caloric deficit.

There are no hacks in which you can consume more calories and lose body fat. Protein in excess can be converted into glucose thru a process called gluconeogenesis, although this is a relatively small process.(15)

A protein overfeeding study found that changes in fat cell size were related to several changes in amino acids.(16) This shows a possible link in which excess proteins can contribute to fat storage, but more research is needed. Although the research shows that protein overfeeding will not contribute to fat gain, excess protein displaces valuable ratios of carbohydrates which can be used for training. Thus, protein should not be considered a “free food” to eat as much as you want; you should still count calories.

Some people have asked when to take whey protein for weight loss, but the research does not suggest an optimal time. How you use whey protein for weight loss is strictly a matter of preference, but taking whey protein in the morning to get the appetite-suppressing effects may be a good choice, or after exercise on an empty stomach. Some people get hungrier after exercise, and others lose their desire to eat, but it’s best to experiment with which time works best for you.


1.         Mattes RD, Rothacker D. Beverage viscosity is inversely related to postprandial hunger in humans. Physiol Behav. 2001;74(4-5):551-7.

2.         Tieken SM, Leidy HJ, Stull AJ, Mattes RD, Schuster RA, Campbell WW. Effects of solid versus liquid meal-replacement products of similar energy content on hunger, satiety, and appetite-regulating hormones in older adults. Horm Metab Res. 2007;39(5):389-94.

3.         Martens MJ, Lemmens SG, Born JM, Westerterp-Plantenga MS. A solid high-protein meal evokes stronger hunger suppression than a liquefied high-protein meal. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2011;19(3):522-7.

4.         Stribiţcaia E, Evans CEL, Gibbons C, Blundell J, Sarkar A. Food texture influences on satiety: systematic review and meta-analysis. Sci Rep. 2020;10(1):12929.

5.         McCrickerd K, Lim CM, Leong C, Chia EM, Forde CG. Texture-Based Differences in Eating Rate Reduce the Impact of Increased Energy Density and Large Portions on Meal Size in Adults. The Journal of Nutrition. 2017;147(6):1208-17.

6.         Rigamonti AE, Leoncini R, Casnici C, Marelli O, Col AD, Tamini S, et al. Whey Proteins Reduce Appetite, Stimulate Anorexigenic Gastrointestinal Peptides and Improve Glucometabolic Homeostasis in Young Obese Women. Nutrients. 2019;11(2):247.

7.       Chungchunlam SMS, Henare SJ, Ganesh S, Moughan PJ. Dietary whey protein influences plasma satiety-related hormones and plasma amino acids in normal-weight adult women. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2015;69(2):179-86.


8.       Bowen J, Noakes M, Clifton PM. Appetite hormones and energy intake in obese men after consumption of fructose, glucose and whey protein beverages. Int J Obes (Lond). 2007;31(11):1696-703.

9.       Pal S, Radavelli-Bagatini S, Hagger M, Ellis V. Comparative effects of whey and casein proteins on satiety in overweight and obese individuals: a randomized controlled trial. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2014;68(9):980-6.

10.       Pal S, Ellis V. The acute effects of four protein meals on insulin, glucose, appetite and energy intake in lean men. Br J Nutr. 2010;104(8):1241-8.

11.       Bendtsen LQ, Lorenzen JK, Bendsen NT, Rasmussen C, Astrup A. Effect of Dairy Proteins on Appetite, Energy Expenditure, Body Weight, and Composition: a Review of the Evidence from Controlled Clinical Trials. Advances in Nutrition. 2013;4(4):418-38.

12.       Claessens M, van Baak MA, Monsheimer S, Saris WH. The effect of a low-fat, high-protein or high-carbohydrate ad libitum diet on weight loss maintenance and metabolic risk factors. Int J Obes (Lond). 2009;33(3):296-304.

13.       Trommelen J, van Loon LJ. Pre-Sleep Protein Ingestion to Improve the Skeletal Muscle Adaptive Response to Exercise Training. Nutrients. 2016;8(12).

14.       Karpik A, Machniak M, Chwałczynska A. Evaluation of Protein Content in the Diet of Amateur Male Bodybuilder. American Journal of Men’s Health. 2020;14(6):155798832097026.


15.       Fromentin C, Tomé D, Nau F, Flet L, Luengo C, Azzout-Marniche D, et al. Dietary proteins contribute little to glucose production, even under optimal gluconeogenic conditions in healthy humans. Diabetes. 2013;62(5):1435-42.

16.       Bray GA, Redman LM, de Jonge L, Rood J, Sutton EF, Smith SR. Plasma Amino Acids During 8 Weeks of Overfeeding: Relation to Diet Body Composition and Fat Cell Size in the PROOF Study. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2018;26(2):324-31.

17. Haun CT, Vann CG, Mobley CB, et al. Effects of Graded Whey Supplementation During Extreme-Volume Resistance Training. Front Nutr. 2018;5:84. Published 2018 Sep 11. doi:10.3389/fnut.2018.00084

About The Author