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Low-Fat Diets Outlast Low-Carb Diets

Time to try Atkins again? Not so fast. A new report from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine showed that people who followed a low-carbohydrate diet lost more weight in the first year, but tended to regain most of the weight during the next two years. In contrast, people who stuck to a low-fat diet maintained their weight loss over three years.

The report, which appeared in the March 2 edition of the Annals of Internal Medicine, suggests that the difference in weight regain between groups reflects the initial weight loss, because greater weight loss within the first year was associated with greater weight regain from 12 to 36 months.

(click to enlarge) Above figure: P = 0.003 for comparisons between diet groups at 6 months. The difference in weight loss between groups was not significant between the diet groups at 36 months (P = 0.071 before and P = 0.056 for the interaction between visit and dietary assignment after adjustment for baseline variables). Error bars represent 95% confidence intervals. Credit: Annals of Internal Medicine.

In short, if you want to take it off and keep it off, a slow and steady low-fat diet may be right for you.

Material adapted from Penn Medicine by CFisher.

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