My objective science response to this is “I told you so!”
But seriously, this is a very important study, I have said something similar for decades. For example, if you read my article Brink’s Unified Theory Of Nutrition you will see I essentially concluded what this recent study found: Not all calories are created equal, macro nutrient ratios matter, and there’s profound effects from simple changes in those macro nutrient ratios on body comp, and tracking changes in fat vs. weight is what actually matters… I don’t know if this study will get the attention it deserves in the media, or by the main stream nutrition/med community, but it’s a seminal study. The fact is, older studies that simply track weight loss/gain need to be scrapped as they are essentially of no value in my view. Modern studies such as this, that actually look at end points that matter, are what will finally answer age old questions on nutrition.
Below is write up of the study for non-science types, and a link to the full study follows for those who wish to read that too.
Calories Raise Body Fat When People Overeat, Not Protein
Medical News Today
In a study published in the January 4 issue of JAMA, researchers assessed 25 healthy individuals who were randomized to different levels of overconsumption on protein diets whilst living in a controlled setting. They found that those who consumed the low-protein diet gained less weight compared with those eating normal and high protein diets. Furthermore, they established that calories alone and not protein seemed to contribute to increases in body fat and that protein did contribute to changes in energy expenditure and lean body mass.
According to background information in the article, “Obesity has become a major public health concern with more than 60 percent of adults in the United States categorized as overweight and more than 30 percent as obese.” However, which role the composition of a diet plays in response to overeating and energy dissipation remains unclear.