A study published in November 2014 has determined that a diet low in carbohydrates and saturated fat may be the most effective eating plan for managing diabetes and associated cardiovascular problems.
Researchers concluded, “A Low Carbohydrate diet with low saturated fat may be an effective dietary approach for type 2 diabetes management if effects are sustained beyond 24 weeks.”
In this study, researchers compared the effects of a very low-carb, low-saturated fat, high-unsaturated fat (LC) diet with a high-unrefined carb/low-fat (HC) diet on glycemic control and cardiovascular factors in type 2 diabetes. The LC diet consisted of 14 percent carbohydrates, 28 percent protein and 58 percent fat (with less than 10 percent coming from saturated fat), while the HC diet contained 53 percent carbs, 17 percent protein and 30 percent fat (again, less than 10 percent from saturated fat).
A total of 93 obese adults were randomly divided to follow one of these two diets, along with an exercise program for 24 weeks. Upon completion, both groups achieved similar weight loss, as well as reductions in blood pressure, fasting blood glucose and LDL cholesterol.
However, the LC group had greater triglyceride decreases, less need for medication, lower glycemic variability (the degree to which a patient’s glucose fluctuates) and HbA1c levels—and increases in protective HDL cholesterol.