RedNova's Updates in General Internal Medicine, a round-up of clinically important research compiled for doctors that was published today, includes the findings of researchers at Duke University who compared a low-carb diet with a low-fat diet.
In the study, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine journal, researchers concluded that "We can now consider low-carbohydrate diets a reasonable option among many. Research should now address self-management and behavioral change at every stage from initiation of diet change to long-term diet adherence and maintenance." after finding that those following a low-carb diet experienced not only a greater loss of body weight, but also a greater decrease in triglycerides coupled with a greater increase in HDL levels compared to those who were placed on a low-fat diet.
While both groups had drop-outs, the low-fat diet had a drop-out rate of 43% compared with the low-carb drop-out rate of 24%.
This isn't a new study, it was published last year. This also isn't new evidence that controlling carbohydrate intake is an effective approach to weight loss. So, why am I including it today? Well, this is the first time I've seen low-carb research included among a compilation of "important clinical research" findings presented, from a disinterested party, to provide information for physicians in practice!
While the media is focused on the bankruptcy of Atkins Nutritionals, gleefully singing "ding dong the low-carb fad is dead," others remain focused on the more important questions - Does a low-carb diet result in appreciable weight-loss? Does a low-carb diet significantly improve health risk markers? Are those who follow a low-carb diet satisfied with the approach? Can one maintain the weight-loss achieved with a low-carb diet in the long-term?
As I've said before, the decline in product sales has no impact on the science. The data is what it is - research shows and is continuing to show that low-carb diets are a reasonable approach for those who need to lose weight!