In a little clinical trial of obese adults, experts discovered that those assigned to check out a low-carbohydrate diet lost more weight over a yr than those who followed a low-fat plan. That they had bigger improvements in their cholesterol and triglyceride levels also, the extensive research team reports in the Sept. 2 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine. Dr. Tian Hu, a doctoral fellow at Tulane University School of Public Health in New Orleans.

And although some experts have elevated concerns that low-carbohydrate diets could be less than heart-healthy, these findings otherwise suggest, said Dr. Lydia Bazzano, who worked on the study as well. Bazzano, a professor of nutrition research at Tulane. In this study Yet, people on the low-carb diet noticed slightly higher improvements in their degrees of “good” HDL cholesterol and triglycerides-another kind of blood body fat.

That might have been because of the bigger weight loss, Hu said, or to the greater amounts of “good” unsaturated fats in their diets. But he also observed that the study ran for just one season, and it’s not clear how people on either diet would fare in the long run.

There are other caveats, too, relating to a dietitian who was not involved in the study. For one, people on the low-carbohydrate diet didn’t stay with it everything well. The program called for no more than 40 grams of sugars a day-the exact carbon copy of about two slices of a loaf of bread.

But, of the entire year by the end, people in the low-carbohydrate group were averaging 127 grams of carbohydrates each day, observed Sonya Angelone, a spokesperson for the Academy of Dietetics and Nourishment. So eating fewer carbohydrates, and choosing high-quality ones-fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains-is a sound idea, according to Angelone.

But one of the concerns with a low-carbohydrate diet, she said, is that individuals will not get enough fiber. A high-fiber diet can help defend against cardiovascular disease, and studies suggest it can aid weight loss by causing people feel more full. So instead of lowering sugars “too much,” Angelone said, you will want to replace processed carbs-like white loaf of bread and pasta-with fiber-rich foods?

The current research included 148 adults who had been obese but free of diabetes and heart problems. About 50 % were arbitrarily designated to a low-carbohydrate diet, as the rest were placed on the low-fat plan. In the end, 82 percent of the low-fat group trapped with the dietary plan for a full yr. The same was true for 79 percent of the low-carbohydrate group. By the one-year mark, people in the low-carbohydrate group got lost an average of 12 pounds almost.

That weighed against only four pounds for the low-fat group. According to Hu, the results do not imply low-carb is the “best” diet for weight loss. Bazzano acknowledged, though, that many of the study participants didn’t firmly follow their recommended low-carbohydrate plan. And she decided that being “careful” about the total amount and type of carbohydrates you take in is key-as against placing a rigid carbohydrate limit.

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Angelone also pointed to another issue with the analysis: Sedentary study individuals were discouraged from taking on exercise, to isolate the consequences of the diet changes. However in real life, people would preferably change their diets and exercise. Angelone said. “It can be hard to exercise on the low-carb diet.” Plus, she added, people on the low-fat diet, who were eating more sugars, might have shed more weight if they’d been exercising. Everyone agreed that there is no one-size-fits-all diet.

When it involves center health, for example, there is strong evidence that the Mediterranean diet-high in “good” sugars and heart-healthy fatty acids like olive oil-is a smart option. Ultimately, people need to make diet changes they can keep up for the long haul-not just until they lose a certain amount of weight. The pounds should come back again if you go back to your old ways, Angelone said.

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