Research News

October 2008 Issue

Low-Fat Diets Fall Short of Results for Low-Carb and Mediterranean Plans

The glory days of the low-fat diet may be over. So suggests a recent Israeli study of 322 moderately obese middle-aged volunteers. Itís not the first study to hint that low-fat diets arenít always best for weight loss, but itís notable for being long-term. The study compared three diets: (1) a low-carb plan modeled after the Atkins diet, with a very low carbohydrate content gradually increasing to a near-normal intake, (2) a low-fat plan (30% of calories) based on American Heart Association guidelines, and (3) a Mediterranean-style plan rich in vegetables plus olive oil and nuts and low in red meat. Researchers monitored participantsí weights and blood lipid levels. Women were instructed to eat 1,500 calories a day, men 1,800.

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