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Low-Carb Diet can Reduce Inflammation

Update Date: May 08, 2014 02:14 PM EDT

A diet low in carbohydrates can encourage weight loss. In a new study, researchers reported another benefit of eating a low-carb diet. According to the study conducted at Linköping University in Sweden, people with type 2 diabetes can reduce their levels of inflammation if they consumed less carbs everyday.

For this study, the researchers headed by Dr. Hans Guldbrand and Professor Fredrik H Nyström, recruited 61 adults diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Based on many studies, researchers know that diabetics tend to have higher levels of inflammation when compared to non-diabetics. High levels of inflammation could increase one's risk of cardiovascular problems as well as other health complications. The researchers wanted to find ways of reducing inflammation in these patients.

For two years, the participants were randomly selected to follow a low-carb or a traditionally low-fat diet. For the first year, the participants received nutritional advice from a dietician at three different times. The team tested the participants' levels of inflammatory markers after six-months into the study.
After the six-month mark, when adherence to the diet was at its highest, the researchers found that both groups lost around 8.8 pounds. The participants eating the low-carb diet had greater reductions in glucose levels in comparison to the participants on the low-fat diet. Reductions in inflammation, however, were only apparent in the participants who followed a low-carb diet.

Even though type 2 diabetes is highly manageable with medications and careful dieting, it could still lead to an increased risk of other health problems. The researchers concluded that people with type 2 diabetes could benefit greatly from eating a low-carb diet. Diabetes should consult with their primary care physicians regarding diet changes to make sure that the body is still getting all the nutrients it needs. The study, "Advice to follow a low-carbohydrate diet has a favourable impact on low-grade inflammation in type 2 diabetes compared with advice to follow a low-fat diet," was published in the Annals of Medicine.

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