It’s one of the most hotly contested areas of dieting: How much do carbohydrates matter when it comes to weight loss?
If you ask a number of celebrities and authors of diet books, it’s pasta, bread, and cookies that stand between you and a svelte physique.
These low-carb proselytizers make very specific claims about the effect cutting carbs has on the body, suggesting that it can speed up fat loss and increase calorie burn. Indeed, many dieters have found at least short-term success following low-carb schemes like the Atkins or Dukan diet.
A group of researchers published the best test of those claims to date in the journal American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
They didn’t find evidence that carbs are the magic key to weight and fat loss. But the study demonstrates just how controversial and fraught the low-carb idea is, and how, despite all the magical claims, there’s a lot we still don’t understand about this diet.
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