Secondary Logo

Journal Logo

Institutional members access full text with Ovid®

Protein nutrition and exercise survival kit for critically ill

Weijs, Peter J.M.a,b,c,d

Current Opinion in Critical Care: August 2017 - Volume 23 - Issue 4 - p 279–283
doi: 10.1097/MCC.0000000000000425
METABOLIC SUPPORT: Edited by Kenneth B. Christopher

Purpose of review Protein delivery as well as exercise of critically ill in clinical practice is still a highly debated issue. Here we discuss only the most recent updates in the literature concerning protein nutrition and exercise of the critically ill.

Recent findings By lack of randomized controlled trial (RCTs) in protein nutrition we discuss four post-hoc analyses of nutrition studies and one experimental study in mice. Studies mainly confirm some insights that protein and energy effects are separate and that the trajectory of the patient in the ICU might change these effects. Exercise has been studied much more extensively with RCTs in the last year, although also here the differences between patient groups and timing of intervention might play their roles. Overall the effects of protein nutrition and exercise appear to be beneficial. However, studies into the differential effects of protein nutrition and/or exercise, and optimization of their combined use, have not been performed yet and are on the research agenda.

Summary Optimal protein nutrition, optimal exercise intervention as well as the optimal combination of nutrition, and exercise may help to improve long-term physical performance outcome in the critically ill patients.

aDepartment of Intensive Care Medicine

bDepartment of Nutrition and Dietetics, Internal Medicine, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam

cDepartment of Nutrition and Dietetics, Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences

dAmsterdam Public Health Institute, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Correspondence to Peter J.M. Weijs, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Internal Medicine, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1117, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Tel: +31 204443211; e-mail:

Copyright © 2017 YEAR Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.