The study, led by an international team of researchers from universities of Peking in China, Harvard and Tulane in the US, included 371,159 participants aged 50-71 years
Low-fat diets include whole grain food, lean meat, reduced-fat dairy, vegetables, lentils and fruits. Picture Courtesy: iStock
According to a new study eating low-carbohydrate diets may raise the risk of early death, while consuming food products low in fat can prolong life.
Short-term clinical trials have shown the effectiveness of low-carbohydrate diets and low-fat diets for weight loss and cardiovascular benefits.
Low-fat diets include whole grain food, lean meat, reduced-fat dairy, vegetables, lentils and fruits. Low-carbohydrate diets, on the other hand, restrict carbohydrate consumption relative to the average diet.
Foods high in carbohydrates are limited, and replaced with foods containing a higher percentage of fat and protein, as well as low-carbohydrate foods.
The study, led by an international team of researchers from universities of Peking in China, Harvard and Tulane in the US, included 371,159 participants aged 50-71 years. The participants were followed for 23.5 years, and 165,698 deaths were recorded. The findings, published in the Journal of Internal Medicine, showed that adopting a low-fat diet could slash the risk of death each year by up to 34 per cent.
Meanwhile, low-carb diets increased mortality risk up to 38 per cent. People on keto-like diets were 28 per cent more likely to die from any cause when compared to their high-carb peers.
"Higher mortality was observed for overall low-carbohydrate diet and unhealthy low-carbohydrate diet, but slightly lower risks for healthy low-carbohydrate diet," the researchers wrote in the study.
"Our results support the importance of maintaining a healthy low-fat diet with less saturated fat in preventing all-cause and cause-specific mortality among middle-aged and older people," they added.
Moreover, following a healthy low-fat diet was associated with significantly lower total mortality by 18 per cent, cardiovascular mortality by 16 per cent, and cancer mortality by 18 per cent, respectively, versus the lowest.
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