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Why you shouldn't follow a low-carbohydrate diet

  1. In the fight against excess kilos, the low-carbohydrate diet has received a lot of attention in recent years. Many swore by it and eliminated starch sources such as rice, potatoes and bananas from the daily diet. Unwise, according to international studies.

  1. The popularity of the low-carbohydrate diet is evident from a campaign by a number of GPs from Leende in Brabant. They urged their patients to eat as little carbohydrates as possible. On the one hand, it is true that the lowest possible sugar intake reduces the risk of obesity and diabetes. But the low-carbohydrate diet also poses health risks. This is the conclusion of Professor Fred Brouns of Maastricht University. A low-carbohydrate diet contains relatively little fiber and a high fat content. This has unfavorable effects on the intestinal flora. Apart from that, Brouns states that a moderately changed diet in which you consume at least 100 to 150 grams of carbohydrates is easier to maintain. There are no proven long-term benefits of a low-carbohydrate diet.

No low-carbohydrate diet

  1. Besides his own publication, Brouns has participated in an international study into nutritional guidelines. All countries and authorities studied, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), recommend in the dietary guidelines to limit the intake of added sugars. However, none of them recommend a low-carb diet.

Half and half

  1. Professor Brouns recommends decreasing the intake of carbohydrates and increasing the intake of fats. A ratio in which both nutrients provide about 40 percent of the energy intake is a healthy measure, he says. With carbohydrate sources it is also important that they contain a lot of fiber and unsaturated fat sources. His most important advice in the fight against obesity and diabetes is to change multiple lifestyle factors simultaneously. A healthy diet should be accompanied by adequate exercise, moderation in the amount of food, smoking cessation and moderate alcohol consumption.

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