Is a Low-Carb or Low-Fat Diet Better for Weight Loss?

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mjacobs
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Is a Low-Carb or Low-Fat Diet Better for Weight Loss?

Post by mjacobs » Thu Aug 02, 2018 4:44 am

There's a longstanding debate among scientists and dieters alike about the best way to shed pounds. Those in the more traditional school maintain that decreasing total calories is most important, while others passionately argue that the "calorie is a calorie" dogma is wrong, and that cutting carbohydrates in particular is the most effective way to trim fat. According to researchers in the low-carb camp, carbohydrates are more likely to promote weight gain than protein or fat because they increase levels of insulin, a hormone that drives fat storage.
The Study: Low-Fat Diet Wins for Fat Loss
To see whether a low-carb diet actually generates a metabolic advantage, researchers at the National Institutes of Health designed a carefully controlled study testing the short-term effects of two different diets: one low in carbohydrates, and the other low in fat. The results were published in September 2015 in the journal Cell Metabolism.
It's Important to Put This Study Into Context
Before you rush to any conclusions, understand that this study was not designed to compare the effectiveness of low-fat diets and low-carb meal plans as people might follow them in the "real world." It was designed to test the theoretical concept that your body treats carbohydrate calories differently from protein and fat calories, and that cutting carbohydrate calories is more effective for stoking your metabolic engine than reducing calories in general.
Low-Carb vs. Low-Fat: Why It Doesn't Really Matter
These results are intriguing, but they don't change my advice for people looking to lose weight. I 100 percent agree with the study authors, who state that the best diet is the one that you can stick with. All of this fuss over low-carb versus low-fat is completely irrelevant if you find that one or both of these eating plans are not successful for you personally. According to this study, you don't gain any special metabolic advantage from following a low-carb diet, but I know that many people find this eating style to be effective for controlling cravings and keeping hunger at bay.
EverydayHealth, generally recommend a middle-of-the-road approach that includes moderate portions of high-quality carbohydrates and healthy fats, because this diet is rich in nutrients that improve long-term health. But for people who are overweight, losing weight is a priority.

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Re: Is a Low-Carb or Low-Fat Diet Better for Weight Loss?

Post by stuward » Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:23 am

Did you write this or did you cut and paste it from somewhere? Does this answer a question someone asked? If so it should be in that thread. if it's just something interesting you found, write a comment saying so.
Stu Ward
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