Fields H, Ruddy B, Wallace MR, Shah A, Millstine D. Are Low-Carbohydrate Diets Safe and Effective?. J Am Osteopath Assoc 2016;116(12):788-793. doi: 10.7556/jaoa.2016.154.
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Keywords: carbohydrate, diabetes, diet, low-carb diet, weight loss
Clinical Question: Are low-carbohydrate diets (LCDs) safe and effective for weight loss and cardiovascular and metabolic health?
Evidence: In the short-term, LCDs may be slightly better than low-fat diets for weight and triglycerides management but not superior for the management of blood glucose, blood pressure, or cholesterol levels.
Recommendation: Physicians should be aware that available evidence for LCDs is limited because of variable definitions, lack of long-term studies, and lack of patient adherence. However, patients who follow LCDs may see modest benefits in short-term weight loss compared with those who follow low-fat diets.
a Most of these diets focus on content of diet and are not strictly calorie limited.
Abbreviation: LCHF, low carbohydrate, high fat.
Abbreviations: HbA1c, hemoglobin A1c; LCD, low-carbohydrate diet; LDL, low-density lipoprotein; VLCD, very-low-carbohydrate diet.
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