Low Carb Beats Low Fat

Posted: Sep 09 2014

some readers may be surprised

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For people who want to lose weight and boost their heart health, cutting down on carbohydrates may work better than trimming dietary fat, a new study suggests.

In a small clinical trial of obese adults, researchers found that those assigned to follow a low-carbohydrate diet lost more weight over a year than those who followed a low-fat plan. The study also found that the low-carb group had better blood test results at the end of the study in terms of both good and bad cholesterol, triglycerides and C-reactive protein, a measure of inflammation. They also ended up with more lean muscle mass than the low-fat group.

The analysis followed 148 obese men and women with no heart disease or diabetes, aged 22 to 75, with equal numbers of black and white participants, for a year. Those assigned to the low-carb group were instructed to eat no more than 40 grams of carbohydrates per day. Participants in the low-fat group were told to aim for 30 percent of calories from fat and 55 percent from carbohydrates. Calories were not restricted in either group, though all participants had both individual and group support for nutritional guidance throughout the course of the study.The conclusion at the end of the study was that the low-carbohydrate diet was more effective for weight loss and cardiovascular risk factor reduction than the low-fat diet. Restricting carbohydrates may be an option for persons seeking to lose weight and reduce cardiovascular risk factors.

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