New York Times - A Call for a Low-Carb Diet That Embraces Fat
The New York Times has a great article breaking down a study concerning low-carb verses low-fat diets. There have been many studies on this subject in the past, but this one is interesting because it didn’t ask the test subjects to limit their calories. I’m a big fan of the low carb diet and the New York Times article highlighted some things that I found interesting:
- It followed a racially diverse group of men and women over the course of a year.
- It did not restrict calories - only carbs or fat (depending on the group they were in).
- The low-carb group lost on average 8 pounds more body fat than the low-fat group.
- Most alarmingly, the low-fat group lost lean muscle mass.
- The low-carb group was told that eating beans and fruit was allowed on their diet (as I’ve explained before).
- The low carb group ate twice the recommended daily allowance of saturated fat and it did not negatively impact their cholesterol, markers for inflammation, or triglycerides (as I’ve mentioned before).
- The low-carb group improved their Framingham risk scores, which calculate the likelihood of a heart attack within the next 10 years. The low-fat group had no improvement.
- Eating refined carbohydrates increased the risk factors from LDL cholesterol while eating saturated fat did not.
- The study showed the priorities of the federal dietary food guidelines increase health risks rather than decrease them. While these guidelines don’t affect the average person, they are used to determine food served in programs like school lunches.
It’s an excellent article, and another example of how our changing understanding of nutrition can help improve our health without having to worry about counting every calorie.