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A Low Fat Diet can aid Weight Loss without Trying

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Credit: National Cancer Institute Len Rizzi (Photographer) - PD

(Best Syndication News) - Researchers from the University of East Anglia found that reducing the amount of fat in a person’s diet could help them lose around three-and-one-half pounds without reducing their food intake. In addition to slimming down, the participants had shown reductions in their “bad” LDL cholesterol levels. The study trial results were published in the British Medical Journal.

The weight loss occurred when the person was picking low-fat foods. The report was commissioned by the World Health Organization (WHO) Nutrition Guidance Expert Advisory Group (NUGAG) Subgroup on Diet and Health to determine if their recommendations for total fat intake were up-to-date.


The researchers reviewed results from 33 randomized controlled trials that were held in North America, Europe, and New Zealand. Cumulatively, 73,589 men, women, and children were studied; all had varying states of health.

The participants who were eating a reduced fat diet were compared against those who were eating a typical fat diet. The participants’ waist and weight were measured at the start and after at least six months.

The results of participants who ate a reduced fat diet were modest and long lasting. The low-fat diet group had an average reduction in body weight of 0.6 kg, their BMI fell by 0.56 kg/m² and their waist circumference tightened by 0.5 cm.

These were not weight-loss trials and the participants were not told to reduce their calorie intake; they ate normal diets. The researchers reported that the weight loss happened early on and lasted for at least seven years.

Lead author, Dr. Lee Hooper, from UEA's Norwich Medical School, explained that the trend for weight loss in people who ate a reduced fat diet was consistent. They saw the trend in almost every trial, Dr. Hopper added.

The study did not investigate the reductions of specific types of fats, such as saturated fats. Dr. Hooper said cutting down on saturated fat could be beneficial because this type of fat is associated with heart disease and stroke.

Reducing the intake of saturated fat can be accomplished by switching over to low fat or skim milk. Eating less butter, cheese, and cutting the fat off meat are also ways to reduce saturated fat intake.

In addition to reducing fat intake, Dr. Hooper suggests that other dietary and lifestyle factors should be included to stay healthy. She said not to smoke, drink alcohol in moderation, stay physically active, stay hydrated, and be sure to eat lots of vegetables and fruits.

By: Marsha Quinn
Health Reporter

ref: 1, 2

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