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Wisdom behind High Protein Diet Questioned

The Total Wellbeing Diet advocated by scientists from Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization // has come under severe scrutiny with an editorial in the journal Nature questioning the wisdom behind the intake of a high-protein diet.

A normal Western diet usually consists of 15 percent of protein, but the Total wellbeing Diet advocates a 30 to 35 percent intake of protein. Manny Noakes and Peter Clifton had recommended eating more fish and meat in the diet in order to accomplish the protein limits. This diet differs from the Atkins one in that dieters are allowed to eat a miniscule amount of carbohydrates and take good helpings of fruits as well as vegetables. The authors arrived at these conclusions after testing out 100 obese women. They put half of them on a high-protein diet and the other half on a high-carbohydrate eating regime. Both diets had the same calories and women lost equal amounts of weight in each category. However, researchers pointed out that women who had increased insulin resistance shed more weight. This prompted the Nature editorial to point out, 'The diet is being promoted as beneficial for everyone, whereas the published research indicates that it is superior to a high-carbohydrate diet only for a sub-population of overweight women with symptoms of metabolic disorder.

Helen Stracey, of the British Dietetic Association also said that high-protein diet is not recommended in all cases, Starchy carbohydrates such as bread cereals, pasta and potatoes should provide the bulk of each meal as they help to provide a sense of fullness and at least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day, she said. The only way to lose weight is to take in fewer calories than you need, or to use up more calories by being more active.


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