Low-carb diet more effective for short-term weight loss than low-fat diet, says review

Jack Woodfield
Mon, 19 Dec 2016
Low-carb diet more effective for short-term weight loss than low-fat diet, says review
US researchers find that a low-carb diets outperform low-fat diets for short-term weight loss.

This new study is the latest to confirm the benefits of low-carb diets, which have been shown to significantly help people with diabetes. As well as aiding weight loss, low-carb diet adherence can help improve blood glucose levels and blood pressure.

Scientists at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona reviewed 41 trials to assess whether the low-carb diet is safe and effective for weight loss, as well as cardiovascular and metabolic health.

When the low-carb diet was compared with other diets, such as a low-fat diet, it was found to be more effective for weight loss without adverse effects on blood glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol.

Lead author Dr Heather Fields noted that a limitation of the review was a lack of information on the type of weight loss, such as whether it was muscle, fat or water.

She added that while a low-carb diet is safe in the short-term, further research is needed on the long-term effects of the diet.

"The best conclusion to draw is that adhering to a short-term low-carb diet appears to be safe and may be associated with weight reduction.

"Physicians must keep in mind that the literature is surprisingly limited, considering the popularity of these diets. Our review found no safety issues identified in the current literature, but patients considering low-carb diets should be advised there is very little data on long-term safety and efficacy."

Fields also stressed that people should ensure they steer clear of processed foods, which can increase the risk of death from all causes, including cancer.

"We encourage patients to eat real food and avoid highly processed foods, especially processed meats such as bacon, sausage, hot dogs, and ham when following any particular diet," she said.

The clinical review was published in The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.

For more information on eating a low-carb diet, visit our Low Carb Program which can help you eat healthily as well as improve blood glucose levels and overall health.
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