People are always searching for the best or fastest weight loss plan. While some may say that one diet plan is better than another, researchers have found that there are many diets out there that are effective in weight loss.
“You can't go wrong,” said Dr. Frank Sacks of the Harvard School of Public Health. “Our bottom line is, choose a diet that is good for your heart and there's a big range of what you can eat. Then just be reasonable about your intake. If you need to lose weight, eat less.”
Over 800 people, who were either overweight or obese, participated in the study. Each person was put on one of four different diets, two that were high in fat and two that were low in fat. As for protein levels, two of the diets were high protein while the other two contained normal protein levels. Carbohydrates varied between 35 percent to 65 percent of the diets. Each participant was supposed to exercise for 90 minutes per week and they were all counseled on their diet.
Researchers studied the participants for two years and found the average weight loss to be 9 pounds. Most of the participants on the four different diets lost about 2 inches from their waist.
“There's no special diet that's better for weight loss than any other,” Sacks said. “As long as it's healthy for you -- high in unsaturated fats, high in whole grains and fiber, low in junk foods and high carb-junk foods, and low in fatty meats -- any of these variations will be fine for losing weight.”
With each different diet that these participants were on, their weight loss peaked at around six months and after a year, they generally started to gain the weight back. The study showed that 15 percent of the participants had lost at least ten percent of their body weight, which lowers their risk of heart and health problems.
So the bottom line is that you should find a diet that you are comfortable with. That way, you may have better results if you are familiar with the diet plan and can follow it easily. Researchers note to make sure it is high in fiber and low in calories and saturated fat.
This study was published in the New England Journal of Medicine.