A   PurdueUniversity study found that including lean sources of pork in a weight loss program could help retain lean body mass while losing weight.

Reported in the journal "Obesity," the study involved 46 women classified as either pre-obese or obese based on their Body Mass Index. The subjects were placed on one of two energy-deficient diets containing either high protein (30 percent) or normal protein (18 percent). The high protein group consumed 6 ounces of lean pork on average per day. They were then monitored over a twelve-week period to measure weight loss, fat mass, lean body mass, and perceived dietary satisfaction.

The study showed that consuming a high-protein diet and accomplishing weight loss before becoming obese help women preserve Lean Body Mass. The women consuming the high-protein diet lost less LBM. Because muscle burns more calories, the finding is important in long-term weight control. Use of a high-protein diet also improves perceptions of satiety and pleasure during energy restriction.

Source: Purdue  University