| GEO World|
| High-fat diets bad for heart|
| Updated at: 1216 PST, Monday, December 14, 2009|
LONDON: Carb-restrictive diets, such as the Atkins diet, have been very popular in the past ten years. However, a new study from Montreal's Royal Victoria Hospital finds that low-carb diets do not help people lose more weight than low-fat, high-carbohydrate diets. The study also shows that people using low-carb diets also have a higher risk of heart disease.
Dr. Steven Hunter, the study's main author, said "By advocating low-carbohydrate, high-fat diets as a weapon against obesity and diabetes, health professionals could be contributing to a dangerous rise in cardiovascular disease."
The study found that both low-carb, high-fat diets and low-fat, high-carb diets bring about the same amount of weight loss and other health factors like insulin response are also the same. However, participants on the low-carb, high-fat diet had increased stiffness in their arteries, which is a sign of heightened cardiovascular risk.
"High-fat diets have become popular because they seemingly promote more rapid weight loss and because of their palatability," Dr. Hunter said. "However, we now have proof that they (low-carb, high-fat diets) do not help people lose weight any faster than more conventional diets, and the potential negatives of increased cardiovascular risks far outweigh the potential positives of more easily sustained dieting (and) weight loss, especially when there is a proven and safe alternative."