Safety and Effectiveness of Low-Carbohydrate Diets Essays

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Although low-fat, low-calorie diet has always been the gold standard of weight loss, low-carbohydrate diet cannot be dismissed. However, despite its popularity, low-carbohydrate diet’s safety and effectiveness continue to be subject of debates. It was not until recently that low-carbohydrate diet is properly studied due to the difficulty of measuring adherence and the high rates of drop-outs. This article will review six original reports done on low-carbohydrate diet. It will analyse the effectiveness of low-carbohydrate diet over short and longer period of time as well as its effects on metabolism, coronary heart disease risk factors, glucose tolerance and psychological aspects. Westman, Yancy, Edman, Tomlin, and Perkins’s (2002) did a…show more content…
They also found that low-carbohydrate diet has more favourable improvement in some factors of coronary heart disease, such as serum triglycerides and serum high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, but not on others, such as blood pressure, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and insulin sensitivity (Foster et al., 2003). The strength of this research is that it comprises of various coronary heart disease risks. This result however may not be reliable as the sample is small and the attrition level is forty-three per-cent. As subjects used were obese individuals that had no serious health disease, their findings cannot be generalised for overweight and obese individuals with serious health disease. HPLC diet was also tested on severely obese adolescents, aged twelve to eighteen (Krebs, Gao, Gralla, Collins, & Johnson, 2010). Similar to previous findings, they found that HPLC diet has significantly greater reduction in Body Mass Index compared to low-fat diet without any adverse effects for up to twenty-four weeks before it diminishes. Therefore, Krebs et al. (2010) concluded that HPLC is a safe and effective option for treatment of severe obesity in adolescent. This result, though, should not be generalised as the sample is small and exclusion of children with poor family supports, various health diseases and disorders may affect result. In addition, high drop-outs rate may also affect result. On the other hand, since the

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