Health News

Fats and carbohydrates: quality over quantity

Which is better, a diet low in fat and high in carbohydrates or a diet high in fat and low in carbohydrates? Maybe the most important kind of fat consumed? In a new review presented in the section of nutrition of the journal Science, researchers from the Harvard school of public health named after T. H. Chan (Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health) and Boston children’s hospital (Boston Childrens Hospital) has reached consensus and made the agenda for future research.

The researchers came to a consensus that no specific ratio of fats to carbohydrates may not be optimal for everyone, and that universal high-quality diet low in sugar and refined grain products will help most people maintain a healthy weight and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

This is a sample of how we can overcome diet war, explained the study’s lead author, Professor David Ludwig (David Ludwig). Our goal was to assemble a team with different areas of scientific interests and opposing views, and to identify areas of convergence, not smoothing out differences.

The authors presented evidence for three opposite positions in the dietary recommendations on fats and carbohydrates:

  • High fat intake causes obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and possibly cancer, so a diet low in fat are optimal.
  • Processed (refined) carbohydrates have a negative impact on metabolism; low-carb or ketogenic (very low carbohydrate) diets high in fat is better for health.
  • The relative amount of fat and carbohydrates included in the diet of low value for health; it’s important what consumed fats or carbohydrates.

The researchers agreed with the assertion that, by focusing on the quality of the diet, replacing saturated fats TRANS fats and unsaturated fats, and refined carbohydrates whole grain and non-starchy vegetables, most people can maintain good health in a wide range of ratios of fats carbs.

Within their differences, the authors identified a list of questions that can serve as the basis for a new agenda of research in the field of nutrition, including:

  • Do diets with different proportions of carbohydrates and fats for body composition (ratio of fat and muscle tissue), regardless of calorie intake?
  • Whether the ketogenic diet metabolic benefits, exceeding standards moderate restriction of carbohydrates, especially for diabetes?
  • What is the optimal amount of specific types of fats (including saturated fats) in the diet with very low carbohydrates?

The researchers believe that the answers to these questions will ultimately lead to the development of more effective nutritional advice.

Valeria SEMA