Carbohydrate restriction has a more favorable impact on the metabolic syndrome than a low fat diet – Volek (2008)

Volek JS, Phinney SD, Forsythe CE, Quann EE, Wood RJ, Puglisi MJ, Kraemer WJ, Bibus DM, Fernandez ML, Feinman RD.

Carbohydrate restriction has a more favorable impact on the metabolic syndrome than a low fat diet.

Lipids. 2009 Apr;44(4):297-309.
DOI: 10.1007/s11745-008-3274-2.

Summary: 12-week study comparing two hypocaloric diets (approximately 1,500 kcal): a carbohydrate-restricted diet (CRD) (%carbohydrate:fat:protein = 12:59:28) and a low-fat diet (LFD) (56:24:20) in 40 subjects with atherogenic dyslipidemia.

Results: Both interventions led to improvements in several metabolic markers, but subjects following the CRD had consistently reduced glucose (-12%) and insulin (-50%) concentrations, insulin sensitivity (-55%), weight loss (-10%), decreased adiposity (-14%), and more favorable triacylglycerol (TAG) (-51%), HDL-C (13%) and total cholesterol/HDL-C ratio (-14%) responses. In addition to these markers for MetS, the CRD subjects showed more favorable responses to alternative indicators of cardiovascular risk: postprandial lipemia (-47%), the Apo B/Apo A-1 ratio (-16%), and LDL particle distribution.

We reckon:  One of the most interestingly findings of this study was despite a 3x higher intake of dietary saturated fat in the subjects on a CRD, circulating saturated fatty acids significantly decreased compared to the subjects in the LFD.  These results support the use of dietary carbohydrate restriction as an effective approach to improve features of MetS and cardiovascular risk.  volek-2008

 

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