There has been much controversy as to which is better for fat loss, low-carb diets or low-fat diets. According to the National Institutes of Health, people lose more weight by reducing their fat intake.
Researchers examined 19 obese people and they were allowed 2,700 calories daily. Over a two week period they tried diets that reduced their caloric intake by 30 percent, either by reducing fat or cutting carbohydrates. The findings published in BBC News found that participants on a low-fat diet lost 463g of body fat on average after six days. This was 80 percent more fat than the participants on the low-carb diet. I believe if it’s easier to stick to a low-carb diet permanently, I would choose just that and Dr. Hall thinks the same.
Dr. Hall told the American Cancer Society website: “If it’s easier to stick to one diet than another, and to ideally do it permanently, then you should choose that diet.
“But if a low-fat diet is better for you, then you are not going to be at a metabolic disadvantage.”
The theory says that lesser carbohydrates lead to lower levels of insulin, which in turn lead to fat burning. I prefer low-carb diets because research shows these type of diets help you lose weight more effectively but this is my first time learning how they compare to low-fat diets.
“All of those things do happen with carb reduction and you do lose body fat, but not as much as when you cut out the fat,” said lead researchers Dr. Kevin Hall, from the US-based National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
The American Cancer Society says that ounce for ounce, fats contain more calories than carbohydrates or proteins, but it’s important to keep in mind that just because something is low in fat doesn’t mean it is low in calories. In this case it seems that you should choose a low-carb diet since fats contain more calories.
A good rule of thumb when you’re reading food labels: For every 100 calories, if the product has 3 grams of fat or less, it’s a low-fat product. This means 30% or less of the calories come from fat.
In reality, any diet that you can stick to is the best for fat loss, regardless if the calories you cut are fats or carbs. This study just shows that you can pick a low-carb or low-fat diet and still lose weight because they require you to reduce calories which is the most important factor for fat loss.
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Source: Hall, Kevin D. et al. “Calorie for Calorie, Dietary Fat Restriction Results in More Body Fat Loss than Carbohydrate Restriction in People with Obesity” Cell Metabolism 13 August 2015