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Should I Choose High-Carb or Low-Carb?

There is an endless debate between proponents of high-carb vs low-carb diets. So, how can you decide which is best for you? In this article, Cliff Harvey PhD summarises the research to show how you can determine what's best for your body.

Key Findings:

Key Findings:

Overall, low-carb is superior to low-fat for weight and fat-loss

However, athletes and those with higher insulin sensitivity may experience superior results from higher-carb diets

Higher-carb strategies are likely to be superior for muscle gain

Low-carb diets are also superior for the improvement of key cardiometabolic markers of future health risk

Adherence is best for low-carb (vs low-fat), especially for people who are insulin resistant

BUT behavioural factors play a role and any diet, based on nutrient-dense whole foods, that you can stick to, is the best diet for you

There is a growing awareness, and rising use of low-carbohydrate diets for health conditions, most especially metabolic syndrome and related disorders, and increasing interest in their use for cancer treatment (covered in a previous issue of CARR). They are also becoming extremely popular in the mainstream. For example, in the first ¼ of 2019, four of five Amazon best-sellers in the ‘Diet and Weight-loss’ category were based on low-carbohydrate diet principles and a google search for “Low-Carbohydrate Diet” returned over 44,000,000 results. Despite this mainstream popularity, many important areas within this area suffer from a lack of relevant research and there are many misconceptions about the relative merits of low-carb vs high-carb diets.

There is also very conflicting advice as to who should (or should not) use either a lower- or higher-carb diet and who will benefit most from either approach. There has been limited research looking into the ‘appropriateness’ of diets more or less carb-restricted for individuals.

In this article, I summarise the available research to try to get to the bottom of who should use a low-carb diet…and who should stick to a moderate or even higher-carb one?

Read more below

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