Both low and high carb diets increase risk of early death, study finds
|CNN – A low-carb or high-carb diet raises your risk of death, a new study suggests, with people eating the food staple in moderation seeing the greatest benefits to their health.
Less than 40% or more than 70% of your energy — or calories — coming from carbohydrates was associated with the greatest risk of mortality. Eating moderate levels between that range offered the best options for a healthy lifespan.
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.
However, the definition of a low-carb diet had some caveats as not all diets were equal.
People on low-carb diets who replaced their carbohydrates with protein and fats from animals, such as with beef, lamb, pork, chicken, and cheese, had a greater risk of mortality than those whose protein and fats came from plant sources, such as vegetables, legumes, and nuts.
Health effects of carbs: Where do we stand?
“We need to look really carefully at what are the healthy compounds in diets that provide protection,” said Dr. Sara Seidelmann — a clinical and research fellow in cardiovascular medicine from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston — who led the research.
Seidelmann warned about the widespread popularity of low-carb diets as a weight loss technique, with people giving up foods such as bread, pasta, and potatoes.
Although previous studies have shown such diets can be beneficial for short-term weight loss and lower heart risk, the longer-term impact is proving to have more negative consequences, according to the study.
“Our data suggests that animal-based low carbohydrate diets, which are prevalent in North America and Europe, might be associated with shorter overall lifespan and should be discouraged,” Seidelmann said … Read the full story at CNN.
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