Meat-eating peril of cutting back carbs

Henrietta Strickland
August 20, 2018

By carbohydrates they meant, such as potatoes, rice and bread etc.

Carb lovers rejoice! A new study shows that a moderate amount of carbohydrates, as a part of your diet, will actually help you to live longer.

The lowest risk of an early death was seen where carbs made up 50-55% of a person's diet, according to the study published Thursday.

The study, led by Harvard School of Public Health in the U.S., goes some way to ending the decades-old debate over whether cutting carbs or fat is a better way to lose weight and improve health.

A lot of people have been trying out the ketogenic diet lately.

Researchers believe the findings help us better understand the link between "specific components of diet and long-term health".

The researchers also pulled data from seven other studies involving more than 400,000 people in 20 countries. They also highlight that low-carb diets in the West often result in people eating more animal fats and meat, rather than more vegetables, fruit, and grains.

Proteins and fats from vegetables, legumes and nuts were also linked to lower mortality.

"We need to look really carefully at what are the healthy compounds in diets that provide protection", said Sara Seidelmann from Brigham and Women's Hospital.

Adding, "Low-carb diets that replace carbohydrates with protein or fat are gaining widespread popularity as a health and weight loss strategy".

In the new study, the researchers examined information from almost 15,500 adults ages 45 to 64 from four communities in North Carolina, Mississippi, Minnesota and Maryland.

Врачи шокировали последствиями низкоуглеводной диеты- ChangeUA
Low-carb and high-carb diets associated with early death: study

Over a 25-year follow up period, more than 6,000 of the men and women died. "The feting and promotion of Global Positioning System promoting often weird low carb diets to manage diabetes has gained much media traction", she said.

The researchers estimated that from the age of 50, the average life expectancy was an additional 33 years for those with moderate carbohydrate intake - four years longer than those with very low carbohydrate consumption, and one year longer than those with high consumption.

Those with a low carbohydrate intake could expect to live to 79 - four years fewer.

"On an "average" 2,000 kcal-a-day intake, a diet of 30% calories from carbs equates to only 150g a day, with sugars (natural or "added") contributing around 50g of that total".

Co-author Prof Walter Willett, of Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in the Us, said: "These findings bring together several strands that have been controversial".

But the researchers recognize that their findings are purely observational at this stage and can not prove a cause and effect of eating too little or too many carbohydrates.

Dr Mente says there a "sweet spot" of consumption levels for all nutrients - and eating too much or too little will be damaging. Essential nutrients should be consumed above a minimal level to avoid deficiency and below a maximal level to avoid toxicity. "On the basis of these principles, moderate intake of carbohydrate (eg, roughly 50% of energy) is likely to be more appropriate for the general population than are very low or very high intakes".

"In fact, this figure is close to the average carbohydrate consumption by the United Kingdom population observed in dietary surveys".

Diets that replace carbohydrates with protein or fat should be avoided due to a possible association with shortened life spans, scientists have warned.

Catherine Collins, an NHS dietitian, said that the "cult of low carb high-fat eating" was based on flimsy evidence that is considered "at odds with advice from WHO and government health bodies globally - including the UK's Public Health England - that recommend a carb intake to provide around half our daily calorie needs".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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