Research shows that a diet high in protein and low in carbohydrates can help shed pounds and normalize blood-glucose levels, improvements that lower the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. But will you live longer on a high-protein, low-carb diet? Two studies in the current edition of the scientific journal Cell Metabolism suggest the opposite. “High protein diets may be effective to lose weight rapidly,” said Dr. Elena Volpi, a professor of geriatrics at UTMB. “But very high protein diets may also be harmful.” Americans tend to consume the bulk of their protein at dinner, and the body isn't always able to process an entire day's worth in one sitting, said Volpi, who wasn't involved in either study. “It appears you can better use the protein you need if you distribute it across three meals, especially if you are a senior,” she said.