Low-glycemic index diet promotes weight loss, cardiovascular risk reduction

however, in the likelihood of reaching the clinical goal of 5 percent weight loss. Between the two high-carbohydrate diets, lowering the glycemic index nearly doubled fat loss; this effect was stronger in women and did not occur among those on high-protein diets. Participants on the high-protein, highglycemic index diet had increased levels of total and LDL (bad) cholesterol, while those on the high-protein, lowglycemic index diet and high carbohydrate, low-glycemic index diet experienced reductions in total and LDL cholesterol. All other cardiovascular risk factors, including levels of HDL (good) cholesterol, free fatty acids and C-reactive protein, were similar among the four groups.

"In conclusion, at least in the short term, our findings suggest that dietary glycemic load, and not just overall energy intake, influences weight loss and postprandial glycemia [blood sugar levels after eating]," the authors write. "Moderate reductions in glycemic load appear to increase the rate of body fat loss, particularly in women. Diets based on lowglycemic index whole grain products (in lieu of whole grains with a high glycemic index) maximize cardiovascular risk reduction, particularly if protein intake is high. Reassuringly, this advice can optimize clinical outcomes within current nutrition guidelines, without the concerns that apply to low-carbohydrate diets." (Arch Intern Med. 2006;166:1466-1475. Available pre-embargo to the media at www.jamamedia.org.)


Contact: Jennie Brand-Miller, Ph.D.
JAMA and Archives Journals

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