A low-carbohydrate diet is better for losing weight and may also be better for lowering the risk of heart disease than a low-fat diet, according to a new study.
While low-carb diets have outperformed other diets when it comes to weight loss, some researchers feared they might be worse for heart health because they tend to be high in fat. The new study shows that with proper nutritional counseling, people can lose more weight and lower their risk factors for heart disease on a low-carbohydrate diet, said the lead author, Dr. Lydia Bazzano of Tulane University in New Orleans.
Bazzano and her colleagues recruited 148 obese men and women between the ages of 22 and 75. Half were randomly assigned to follow a low-carbohydrate diet for a year, and the other half were assigned to a low-fat diet for a year. During that time, the researchers found, people on the low-carbohydrate diet lost more weight and more body fat than those on the low-fat diet - about eight additional pounds.
Additionally, the researchers saw no increases in total cholesterol or "bad" LDL cholesterol between the two groups. Bazzano said that's good news since some thought a low-carbohydrate diet would increase cholesterol levels.
First published September 2 2014, 8:12 AM