A low-carbohydrate diet in which more fat and protein sources come from plants than animals may be protective against adverse health conditions, according to a recent Annals of Internal Medicine study.
In an analysis, a higher-vegetable, low-carbohydrate diet was associated with a 20 percent lower risk of death. Conversely, a low-carb diet high in meat tended to be associated with a 23 percent increased risk of death.
“These results suggest that the health effects of a low-carbohydrate diet may depend on the type of protein and fat, and a diet that includes mostly vegetable sources of protein and fat is preferable to a diet with mostly animal sources of protein and fat, “ writes Teresa Fung, Sc.D. of Simmons College in Boston, and colleagues. Low-carbohydrate diets have been associated with weight loss promotion and improved blood cholesterol levels.
The researchers examined data from two studies, the Nurses’ Health Study and Health Professionals’ Follow-Up Study. A diet assessment of a total of 85,168 women and 44,548 men found that low-carbohydrate diets with more meat tended to be associated with higher all-cause mortality.
This could be due to the established health benefits of unsaturated fats, dietary fiber, micronutrients, and other vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that meat-based diets may be lacking.
Tips for a healthy low-carb diet:
• Avoid processed meats that contain saturated fats and nitrites.
• Opt for fish over red meat.
• Include nuts, avocados, olives, and other plant fats in the diet.
• Eat a diet of whole foods rather than convenience snacks.
Acupuncture & Massage College’s Community Clinic offers acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine and massage therapy for a wide range of health conditions as well as for overall wellness. To schedule an appointment call (305) 595-9500. For information about AMC’s Oriental Medicine and Massage Therapy programs ask for Joe Calareso, Admissions Director.