Meals were provided to participants at 60% of their estimated calorie requirements.
In the Eco-Atkins regimen, 26% of calories came from carbohydrates, 31% from protein and 43% from fat. The control diet was much higher in carbohydrates, at 58% of calories, while lower in protein (16%) and fat (26%).
At the end of the study weight loss was similar – about 4kg – in both groups, reflecting the bottom-line importance of calories rather than protein-carb-fat ratio in weight loss.
But reductions in LDL cholesterol levels were greater for the low-carbohydrate diet; LDL levels in the Eco-Atkins group dropped 20.4% versus 12.3% in the control group. Improvements in the ratios between total cholesterol and HDL (“good”) cholesterol were also greater in the low-carb group.
The low-carb diet also appeared to produce beneficial changes in levels and ratios of apolipoproteins, proteins that bind to fats. In addition, small but significantly greater reductions were seen in both systolic (top number) and diastolic (bottom number) blood pressure for the low-carbohydrate vs. the high-carbohydrate group.
More research however is needed before recommending a low-carb, vegetarian approach to weight loss.
Can gum make you thinner?
Gum chewing burns only about 11 calories an hour. But if it keeps you from eating a chocolate bar, that’s a big plus.
Studies on whether gum reduces appetite have produced conflicting findings. The latest study, in the journal Appetite, found that when women chewed gum (15 minutes, once an hour, for three hours), they ate about 30 fewer calories when subsequently offered a snack, compared to when they hadn’t chewed gum. The women also said they felt less hungry and fuller after chewing the gum. Gum manufacturers have helped publicize these results. But each piece of gum had 5 to 10 calories, so the women didn’t actually cut down on calories significantly. Would sugarless gum have had the same effect? Maybe, maybe not.
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