Sunday, March 13, 2011

Carbohydrate Restriction Reduces Liver Triglycerides More Effectively Than Calorie Restriction - With Equal Weight Loss Outcomes.

A calorie is not a calorie, I hope you knew that even before Garry Taubes published his famous NY Times best-seller. Yet, in case you are still looking for respective studies to show to medially indoctrinated family members or friends, who still believe that - even if fat is not the enemy - half ratios would be the key to health & longevity, you might be interested in the results of a very recent investigation by Browning et al. (Browning. 2011).

The scientists put a group 18 non-alcoholic-fatty-liver patients on either a carbohydrate-restricted (<20g/day) or a calorie restricted (1200-1500kcal/day) diet - just to make sure you get this right: the carb-restricted group ate as much calories as they wanted! - and measured hepatic triglyceride levels before and after the 2 week dietary intervention. Probably to the surprise of many members of the medical orthodoxy, both groups lost about the same amount of weight (in fact the low-carb group lost -4.6kg, while the low-calorie group lost only -4.0kg!), yet the low-carb group had a much greater reduction in hepatic triglyceride levels:
Liver triglycerides decreased significantly with weight loss (P , 0.001) but decreased significantly more (P = 0.008) in carbohydrate-restricted subjects (-55.6%) than in calorie-restricted subjects (-28.6%).
So, even if you are not particularly interested in your liver health, the fact that by eating to satiety and just dropping your carb intake to <20g/day you can lose the same ~4.5kg you would lose if you starved yourself for 14 days should prick your ears.