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  • Low-carbohydrate causes 10 lbs weight loss in women vs 4-6 lbs with Zone Diet and Low-Fat Diet

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
    Friday, May 28, 2010 7:13 am Email this article
    Women on a low-carbohydrate Atkin’s diet lost roughly 10 lbs after one year vs 4-6 lbs for those on three other diets.

    The low-carb diet also improved levels of HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure better than the other diets.

    The study involved 311 overweight or obese premenopausal women, 25- to 50-years old.

    They were randomly assigned to one of four diets:

    1. Atkin’s Diet — High-fat, high-protein, very low-carb (less than 20 grams of carbs per day to start).

    2. Zone Diet — 30% protein, 30% fat, 40% carbs. Eat 3 meals of no more than 400 calories, and 2 snacks of 150 calories.

    3. LEARN Diet — low-fat, high-carb, based on the U.S. Food Pyramid, 55-60% of calories from carbohydrates, less than 
10% of calories from saturated fat, caloric restriction, 
increased exercise, and behavior modification strategies.

    4. Ornish Diet — Very low-fat (no more than 10% of calories from fat), high-carbohydrate.

    The average weight loss after one year was:
    1. Atkin’s Diet — 10.2 lbs
    2. Zone Diet   —  3.5 lbs
    3. LEARN Diet —  5.7 lbs
    4. Ornish Diet —  4.8 lbs

    The Atkins diet caused…

    • more weight loss 
(10 lbs vs 4 lbs vs 6 lbs vs 5 lbs)

    • greater increase in HDL levels
(+5 vs +2 vs +3 vs 0 mg/dL)

    • greater decrease in triglycerides 
(-29 vs -4 vs -15 vs -15 mg/dL)

    • larger decrease in blood pressure
(-8/4 vs -3/2 vs -3/2 vs -2/1 mm Hg)

    • changes in LDL levels were
(+1 vs 0 vs +1 vs -4 mg/dL)


    Gardner C, Kiazand A, Alhassan S, Kim S, Stafford R, Balise R, Kraemer H, King A. Comparison of the atkins, zone, ornish, and learn diets for change in weight and related risk factors among overweight premenopausal women: The a to z weight loss study: A randomized trial. JAMA. 2007 Mar 7, 297(9):969-77.


    Christopher D. Gardner, PhD
    Stanford Prevention Research Center and the Department of Medicine
    Stanford University Medical School
    Hoover Pavilion, N229
    211 Quarry Rd
    Stanford, CA 94305-5705
    .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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