I found this article today and much of it rings true with what many of us who personally follow low carb diet regimes have seen with our lipid panels despite us being constantly told that a low carb high fat diet will lead to worsening lipids and CVD risk by our HCP’s and the current healthy eating guidelines…
“The health benefits of a low-carbohydrate diet over a low-fat diet have, yet again, been confirmed in a recent meta-analysis published in the October issue of the American Journal of Epidemiology out on Oct. 19.
Researchers from Tulane University studied the effects of two diets on metabolic risk factors such as weight, total cholesterol, LDL and HDL cholesterol and triglycerides. For the purposes of the study, a low-carbohydrate diet was considered to be one where 45 percent or less of the calories came from carbohydrates and a low-fat diet was considered to be one where 30 percent or less of the calories in the diet came from fat.
The researchers only included studies which were randomized and controlled, meaning that the participants were randomly assigned to either the diet or control group and that there was a placebo group who remained on their regular diet. This resulted in a total of 23 trials from multiple countries spanning from 1966 – 2011 and including 2788 participants being included in the meta-analysis. Two independent groups analysed the data to decide which studies and results should be included in the meta-analysis.
Both low-carbohydrate and low-fat diets lowered weight and improved metabolic risk factors.
They found that while both diets resulted in weight loss of approximately the same amount, the low-carbohydrate diet more effectively reduced triglycerides, or the amount of fat in the blood and increased the amount of high-density lipoproteins or HDL cholesterol which is considered to be the ‘good’ type of cholesterol, not the plaque-forming kind. Participants following the low-carbohydrate diet experienced a slightly, but statistically significantly lower reduction in total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein or LDL cholesterol.
The study concluded that low-carbohydrate diets are at least as effective as low-fat diets at reducing weight and improving metabolic risk factors. The researchers also recommended that low-carbohydrate diets could be recommended to obese people with abnormal metabolic risk factors for the purpose of weight loss.”