Is High Protein, High Fat or High Carb Better for Weight Loss?



ask-dr-varady-thumbnailHave you seen any difference in the effectiveness of the diet when eating high protein or low glycemic foods versus carbs?

At this point, we have only examined whether the diet works when eating high fat foods. Results from this high fat study indicate that people  can lose just a much weight while eating high fat foods on diet days and feast days, as compared to eating low fat foods on these days. These  findings are described in detail in the book. Whether these same effects are noted with a low glycemic diet or high protein diet, have not yet been tested, but we hope to do so soon.



Notes: Dietary preferences are highly individual. Just because I love okra, does not mean you will, or your neighbor will, and so on. An important step in transforming any diet into a lifestyle is evaluating your thoughts, preferences and how the diet fits or dovetails to your satisfaction level with the diet and your life while following the diet. What does this mean? Well it means you want a diet to be part of a lifestyle change, not a “quick fix it and forget it” thing. You want to make sustainable choices. (ie Just because I choose to add low carb to ADF, and can make a sustainable, long-term change to low carb, doesn’t mean it’s right for you or will be sustainable long-term. Cutting out breads, pastas, potatoes and rice may be too restrictive for you and lead to bingeing or diet dissatisfaction, causing your lifestyle change to fail. So you must know what works for you!)

Ask yourself, do you “feel” better on a high fat diet? Do you feel better on a low fat diet? The Atkins folks seem very convinced that the combination of high fat in conjunction with high carb could be a lethal duo for many because it may lead to poor blood lipid profiles, increased insulin production, increased blood sugar and increased inflammatory markers. What I take from that, according to Drs. Weston, Phinney, and Volek, authors of the newer generation of Atkins books and even Dr. Atkins himself, is if you are going to eat a high carb diet, then you should keep fats low–maybe no higher than 30%. If you choose to eat a high fat diet, then you really need to keep those carbs very low (somewhere less than 50-60g of daily net carbohydrate for most people.

And remember, with a 500 FDB (fast day budget), you’ll get less food quantity or volume eating a high fat diet, but will have a higher food volume eating “lower” fat–because fat has more calories per gram than protein or carbohydrates. Fat has 9 calories/gram and protein and carbs have 4 calories/gram. However, many people report greater satiety and diet satisfaction when eating a high fat/low carb or lower carb diet.

Which do you prefer, low fat or high fat? Are you a volume eater? We want to hear from you! It will help us determine the types of recipes you prefer. Thanks!


Fast Days Healing Days is happy to answer generic questions about the EOD diet or alternate day fasting in the comments section of this post. To ask Dr. Varady a question regarding the EOD diet or this post, please visit her Facebook Fan Page and direct your questions to her. Be sure to visit Dr. Varady’s EOD Diet website.

Author: Susie T. Gibbs

SusieT is passionately committed to seeking studies and research detailing the most effective strategies for killing inflammation, boosting health, increasing energy and expanding longevity through nutrition. Seeking health through ancestral principles and making darn good food while traveling along life’s path to better health occupies a key place in her personal food philosophy. SusieT develops recipes and writes about cooking, food, health and nutrition news. Find her latest work in CarbSmart Magazine, a digital magazine from the leaders in low carbohydrate information. A two-year survivor from late stage, hormone-positive breast cancer, SusieT encourages everyone to meet their kitchen and begin a love affair with life and cooking good, clean, nourishing meals. The life you save could be your own. Email SusieT with questions and suggestions for new 5:2 and 4:3 ADF/EOD recipes.

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