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Effects of low-carbohydrate vs low-fat diets on weight loss and cardiovascular risk factors: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

Nordmann, Alain J. and Nordmann, Abigail and Briel, Matthias and Keller, Ulrich and Yancy, William S. Jr and Brehm, Bonnie J. and Bucher, Heiner C.. (2006) Effects of low-carbohydrate vs low-fat diets on weight loss and cardiovascular risk factors: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Archives of internal medicine, Vol. 166, H. 3. pp. 285-293.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A6419914

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Low-carbohydrate diets have become increasingly popular for weight loss. However, evidence from individual trials about benefits and risks of these diets to achieve weight loss and modify cardiovascular risk factors is preliminary. METHODS: We used the Cochrane Collaboration search strategy to identify trials comparing the effects of low-carbohydrate diets without restriction of energy intake vs low-fat diets in individuals with a body mass index (calculated as weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in meters) of at least 25. Included trials had to report changes in body weight in intention-to-treat analysis and to have a follow-up of at least 6 months. Two reviewers independently assessed trial eligibility and quality of randomized controlled trials. RESULTS: Five trials including a total of 447 individuals fulfilled our inclusion criteria. After 6 months, individuals assigned to low-carbohydrate diets had lost more weight than individuals randomized to low-fat diets (weighted mean difference, -3.3 kg; 95% confidence interval [CI], -5.3 to -1.4 kg). This difference was no longer obvious after 12 months (weighted mean difference, -1.0 kg; 95% CI, -3.5 to 1.5 kg). There were no differences in blood pressure. Triglyceride and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol values changed more favorably in individuals assigned to low-carbohydrate diets (after 6 months, for triglycerides, weighted mean difference, -22.1 mg/dL [-0.25 mmol/L]; 95% CI, -38.1 to -5.3 mg/dL [-0.43 to -0.06 mmol/L]; and for high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, weighted mean difference, 4.6 mg/dL [0.12 mmol/L]; 95% CI, 1.5-8.1 mg/dL [0.04-0.21 mmol/L]), but total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol values changed more favorably in individuals assigned to low-fat diets (weighted mean difference in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol after 6 months, 5.4 mg/dL [0.14 mmol/L]; 95% CI, 1.2-10.1 mg/dL [0.03-0.26 mmol/L]). CONCLUSIONS: Low-carbohydrate, non-energy-restricted diets appear to be at least as effective as low-fat, energy-restricted diets in inducing weight loss for up to 1 year. However, potential favorable changes in triglyceride and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol values should be weighed against potential unfavorable changes in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol values when low-carbohydrate diets to induce weight loss are considered.
Faculties and Departments:03 Faculty of Medicine > Departement Biomedizin > Former Units at DBM > Metabolism (Keller/Müller)
03 Faculty of Medicine > Bereich Medizinische Fächer (Klinik) > Ehemalige Einheiten Medizinische Fächer (Klinik) > Klinische Endokrinologie (Keller)
03 Faculty of Medicine > Departement Klinische Forschung > Bereich Medizinische Fächer (Klinik) > Ehemalige Einheiten Medizinische Fächer (Klinik) > Klinische Endokrinologie (Keller)
UniBasel Contributors:Keller, Ulrich O.
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Bibsysno:Link to catalogue
Publisher:American Medical Association
ISSN:0003-9926
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:02 Oct 2015 10:00
Deposited On:02 Oct 2015 10:00

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