Low Carb Diets Vindicated, Once Again

Last modified on March 6th, 2007

If you would have mentioned that you were trying to lose weight by a reducing your carbohydrate intake a few years ago, people would have dismissed you as crazy and told you that you were only hurting your body. However, that all changed sometime around 2003 when a prestigious medical school released a peer-reviewed study that basically showed Low Carbohyrate diets not only help people lose more weight, but also result in better blood-lipid profiles than their low-fat counterparts.

Since then, I’ve read countless studies on PubMed that basically indicate the same thing. However,
another fairly major study just came out that is of interest. Here are the key points:

A study of four popular diets found that women put on the one with the least carbohydrates — the Atkins plan — lost at least twice as much weight as those on the others, researchers said on Tuesday.

Women assigned to the Atkins group lost an average of 10.4 pounds (4.7 kgs) compared to 5.7 pounds (2.5 kgs) for LEARN, 4.8 pounds (2.1 kgs) for Ornish and 3.5 pounds (1.6 kgs) for Zone, the study said.

The women on the Atkins diet also had the most improvements in terms of cholesterol and blood pressure, added the study published in this week’s
Journal of the American Medical Association.

The authors said some have worried that diets low in carbohydrates but high in total and saturated fat would cause cholesterol problems and increase the risk of heart disease.

“These concerns have not been substantiated in recent weight-loss diet trials,” including the new research, the authors said.

Harvard Medical school, which has one of the most famous departments or nutrition, updated it’s food guide years ago, squarely placing refined carbohydrates at the top of the food pyramid (that is, the ones you should eat the least of). I’m still amazed at how many nutrionists or “doctors” firmly place their nutrition beliefs in a very low fat diet, something which for many people which any type of insulin resistance is practically lethal. I’m glad to see more evidence coming out so that manufacturers of garbage food might start putting some nutrition back into their products.