Which Is Better for Weight Loss, a Low-Fat Diet or a Low-Carb Diet? There’s long been debate over whether low-fat or low-carb diets are better for weight loss. Both — and neither, according to new research published in JAMA. In a 600-person, year-long study, the two eating styles helped dieters drop almost exactly the same number of pounds — and there didn’easiest way to lose weight in a week at home seem to be much rhyme or reason as to who succeeded on which plan, explains study author Christopher Gardner, director of nutrition studies at the Stanford Prevention Research Center.
You can be successful on either one. There isn’t any one diet that anyone has to follow. TIME Health Newsletter Get the the sense house health and science news, plus: burning questions and expert tips. The people in the study were all between 18 and 50 years old, and were all overweight or obese but otherwise healthy.
The whole group attended nutrition classes, and each person was directed to minimize their intake of sugars, refined flours and trans fats while eating plenty of vegetables and nutrient-dense foods. Half the group was randomly assigned to significantly decrease how many carbohydrates they ate, while the other half cut way back on fat. Individual results after a year were quite varied — one person lost 60 pounds, while another gained 20 — but the average weight loss in each group was almost identical: 11 pounds in the low-fat group, compared to 13 pounds in the low-carb group. What’s more, the researchers had hypothesized that certain genetic and metabolic markers identified in is it safe to lose 10 pounds in a week studies would predict which people would succeed on which diet — but that didn’t turn out to be the case, Gardner says.
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