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Low carb diet found to improve lipid markers

By Editor
21st December 2018, Low carb high protein diet Research

Restricting carbohydrates can improve lipid markers when compared with low-fat diets, according to a recent study.

A team including researchers from the Liverpool John Moores University wanted to explore how different dietary approaches  impact low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and other lipid markers in overweight and obese adults.

Obesity rates are fast increasing and epidemics of noncommunicable diseases are raising concern regarding the efficiency of existing dietary recommendations.

A systematic review and meta-analyses were conducted to compare the effects of very low, low, and moderate carbohydrate, higher fat diets versus high-carbohydrate, low-fat diets on low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and other lipid markers in overweight/obese adults.

Pooled analysis

Initially carbohydrate-restricted diets showed no significant difference in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol after six, 12, and 24 months.

Although an overall pooled analysis statistically favored low-fat diets (0.07 mmol/L; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.02-0.13; P = 0.009], this was clinically insignificant.

High-density lipoprotein cholesterol and plasma triglycerides at six and 12 months favored carbohydrate-restricted diets (0.08 mmol/L; 95%CI, 0.06-0.11; P < 1 × 10-5 and -0.13 mmol/L; 95%CI, -0.19 to -0.08; P < 1 × 10-5, respectively).

These favorable changes were more marked in the subgroup with very-low carbohydrate content (< 50 g/d; 0.12 mmol/L; 95%CI, 0.10-0.14; P < 1 × 10-5 and -0.19 mmol/L; 95%CI, -0.26 to -0.12; P = 0.02, respectively).

The authors concluded: “Large randomised controlled trials of at least 6 months duration with carbohydrate restriction appear superior in improving lipid markers when compared with low-fat diets.

“Dietary guidelines should consider carbohydrate restriction as an alternative dietary strategy for the prevention/management of dyslipidemia for populations with cardiometabolic risk.”

This latest research further supports the growing popularity of the low carb diet, which has already had a large impact on many people with type 2 diabetes.

More than 380,000 people have signed up to Diabetes Digital Media’s Low Carb Program. It is a 10-week, evidence-based structured behavioural change initiative, which supports people with type 2 diabetes and those at high risk of the condition to place it into remission. The programme was described as “effective” for achieving glycemic control, weight loss and reducing hypoglycaemic medications, according to a study published in the summer.

A low-carbohydrate approach to blood glucose control has been proven can help people lose weight, improve their health and wellbeing, and their medication dependency.

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