It has emerged that University of Copenhagen researchers have finally solved the obesity riddle.
If you want to lose weight, you should maintain a diet that is high in proteins with more lean meat, low-fat dairy products and beans and fewer finely refined starch calories such as white bread and white rice, says the study.
With this diet, you can also eat until you are full without counting calories and without gaining weight.
The study was conducted by eight European research centres and headed by Thomas Meinert Larsen and Professor Arne Astrup at the Faculty of Life Sciences (LIFE).
The large-scale random study called Diogenes examined 772 European families comprising 938 adult family members and 827 children. Throughout the project, the families received expert guidance from dieticians and were asked to provide blood and urine samples.
The design comprised the following five diet types:
A low-protein diet (13pc of energy consumed) with a high glycemic index (GI), a low-protein, low-GI diet, a high-protein (25percent of energy consumed), low-GI diet, a high-protein, high-GI diet, a control group which followed the current dietary recommendations without special instructions regarding glycemic index levels and a high-protein, low-GI diet works best.
Fewer participants in the high-protein, low-GI groups dropped out of the project than in the low-protein, high-GI group. The initial weight loss on the 800-kcal diet was an average of 11.0 kg.
The average weight regain among all participants was 0.5 kg, but among the participants who completed the study, those in the low-protein/high-GI group showed the poorest results with a significant weight gain of 1.67 kg.
The weight regain was 0.93 kg less for participants on a high-protein diet than for those on a low-protein diet and 0.95 kg less in the groups on a low-GI diet compared to those on a high-GI diet.
The children simply followed the same diet as their parents. : In the group of children who maintained a high-protein, low-GI diet the prevalence of overweight dropped spontaneously from approx. 46percent to 39percent - a decrease of approx. 15percent.
The Diogenes study shows that the current dietary recommendations are not optimal for preventing weight gain among overweight people.
A diet consisting of a slightly higher protein content and low-GI foods ad libitum appears to be easier to observe and has been documented to ensure that overweight people who have lost weight maintain their weight loss.
The results were recently published in the distinguished New England Journal of Medicine.