Low-Carb Diet May Improve Metabolic Syndrome Risk Factors
Metabolic syndrome increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. According to a new study, a low-carb diet may help improve metabolic syndrome risk factors even if no weight is lost.
Participants in the study included 16 men and women who were obese and had metabolic syndrome. They were fed three 4-week weight maintenance diets that were low, moderate, and high in carbohydrates. There was a 2-week washout period before switching diets. Blood samples were taken to assess serum glucose, triglycerides, and LDL and HDL cholesterol levels. Total lean mass, total fat mass, and waist circumference were also measured.
After consuming the low-carb diet, more than half of the participants saw their metabolic syndrome reversed and had significantly improved triglyceride and cholesterol levels. They also had decreased saturated fat in the bloodstream and an increase in the size of cholesterol particles in the blood, which decreases the risk of cardiovascular disease. None of the participants lost weight and their waist circumference was unchanged.
In addition, the low-carb diet enhanced fat oxidation and improved blood sugar levels.
The study was conducted by researchers from The Ohio State University. It was published on June 20, 2019 in the journal JCI Insight.