Atkins diet doesn’t help you lose weight, but leads to weight gain in long run: Study

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Atkins diet is one of the most followed diet regime by those who are looking to reduce their carbohydrate consumption and increase protein intake to get in shape and shed some kilos off their body; however, a new research has claimed that a high-protein diet actually increases the risk of weight gain in the long run and could cause an early death.

‘Higher dietary protein intake is associated with long-term increased risk of body weight gain and overall death in a Mediterranean population at high cardiovascular risk”, concludes a new research by Rovira i Virgili University in Reus, Spain.

The study found that Atkins diet followers are almost twice as likely to gain weight as others and are even at a greater risk of dying during the course of the research than those who ate a more balanced diet.

Researcher said that though high-protein diets are a common thing among those looking to shed some kilos, there is not proof that such a diet helps in losing weight in the long-term. In contrast there is evidence that high-protein diet cause health issues.

One of the primary recommendation for those looking to shed weight is to start having more proteins in their diet as it is filling than carbohydrate. Looking at Atkins diet – this style promotes swapping bread and potatoes for fried breakfasts and steaks – it is one of the most common forms of protein-based diet regime in the UK and according to statistics, as many as three million Britons followed such a regime when it was at its peak of popularity.

To test if such a diet regime actually helps in shedding weight in the long run, researchers at the Rovira i Virgili University tracked the health of men and women at high risk of heart disease for almost five years. They gave particular attention to how much protein they ate.

Researchers found that those who followed an Atkins-like pattern of diet – high on protein and low on carbohydrates – were almost twice as likely to gain more than 10 per cent of their body weight.

Surprisingly, they were also 59 per cent more likely to die during the study. The risk of early death increased to 66 per cent for those who had high-protein diet but also cut back on fat.