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"Uncovering the Truth: Do Low Carb, High Protein Diets Really Increase Mortality Risk?"

While short-term carbohydrate restriction over a period of a week can result in a significant loss of weight,

of serious concern is what potential exists for the following of this type of eating plan for longer periods of months to years.


Low carbohydrate diets, which restrict carbohydrate in favor of increased protein or fat intake, or both, are a popular weight-loss strategy. However, the long-term effect of carbohydrate restriction on mortality is controversial and could depend on whether dietary carbohydrate is replaced by plant-based or animal-based fat and protein. 


Low carbohydrate dietary patterns favoring animal-derived protein and fat sources, from sources such as lamb, beef, pork, and chicken, were associated with higher mortality, whereas those that favoring plant-derived protein and fat intake, from sources such as vegetables, nuts, peanut butter, and whole-grain breads, were associated with lower mortality.


Complications such as heart arrhythmias, cardiac contractile function impairment, sudden death, osteoporosis, kidney damage, increased cancer risk, impairment of physical activity and lipid abnormalities can all be linked to long-term restriction of carbohydrates in the diet.


Professor Maciej Banach of the the European Society of Cardiology found that low carbohydrate diets are unsafe and should be avoided. Professor Banach further found that people who consumed a low carbohydrate diet were at greater risk of premature death. Risks were also increased for individual causes of death including coronary heart disease, stroke, and cancer. 


This study examined the relationship between low-carbohydrate diets, all-cause death, deaths from coronary heart disease, and cancer in 24,825 people. Compared to those in the highest carbohydrate group, those who ate the lowest carbohydrates had a 32 percent higher risk of all-cause death over six years. In addition, risks of death from heart disease and cancer were increased by 51 percent and 35 percent, respectively.


Professor Banach said: “Low carbohydrate diets might be useful in the short term to lose weight, lower blood pressure, and improve blood glucose control, but our study suggests that in the long-term they are linked with an increased risk of death from any cause, and deaths due to cardiovascular disease, cerebrovascular disease, and cancer.”

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