The low-carb lifestyle has been adopted by many people all over the world and nutritionists have encouraged their patients to cut down on carbohydrates if they want to lose weight in an effective manner. The explanation behind this theory is that a diet low on carbohydrates will make your body burn fat faster and better.
However, a team of researchers from the National Institutes of Health carried out a study whose results reveal that a low-fat diet is still better than the low-carb diet.
They conducted an experiment in which they monitored 19 obese patients that had been split into two groups of for two weeks. One of the groups went on a low-fat diet and the other on a low-carb diet for two weeks. Both groups consumed the same amount of calories.
At first, they were given 2,700 calories every day. Afterwards, the number of calories was reduced by 30 percent. One of the groups had the amount of carbohydrates reduced and the other group had the amount of fats reduced. The researchers also analyzed the patients’ urine, looking at the amount of CO2, Oxygen and nitrogen.
After measuring the results, it was clear that those who had reduced the quantity of fat they consumed were more successful, even if there was only a slight change to be noted. Those who had a low-carb diet had lost about 250 grams of their weight and the other ones had lost more than 460 grams.
“In contrast to previous claims about a metabolic advantage of carbohydrate restriction for improving body fat loss, our data and model simulations support the opposite conclusion when comparing the reduced-fat and reduced-carbohydrate diets. Furthermore, we can definitively reject the claim that carbohydrate restriction is required for body-fat loss,” said the authors.
Even if the differences between the two groups are not very significant and the period of time dedicated to the experiment was quite short, the results are extremely important. This is mainly because they prove that the reduction of carbohydrates does not necessarily lead to massive weight loss, especially when the diet is high in fat.
According to Dr. Kevin Hall, who is a metabolism researcher from National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, reducing the caloric intake and maintaining it seems to be the most successful diet, after all.
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