Low Carbohydrate Diet Packs No Bone Loss

by Medindia Content Team on May 27, 2006 at 6:17 PM
Low Carbohydrate Diet Packs No Bone Loss

A three-month study by rheumatologists at the University of South Florida stated that a restricted low-carbohydrate diet doesn't increase the bone loss for adults, who follows an Adkins diet prescribed for weight loss and it was published in the online issue of the journal Osteoporosis International.

A more broadly used weight reducing technique nowadays is a low carbohydrate diet, but it has its own critics and side effects. One among that is the low carbohydrate diet, which replaces calories from carbohydrates with increased amounts of good quality high-protein foods like meat, poultry, fish and eggs, may alter the body's acid-base balance. Thus increasing bone turnover (more rapid depletion than bone formation) a clinical risk for (reduced bone strength, integrity and thickness) osteoporosis.


John D. Carter, assistant professor in the Division of Rheumatology, USF College of Medicine said, 'Low carbohydrate diet takers were found to loose weight, but there is nothing appeared to compromise bone integrity or its loss'.

Low carbohydrate, high protein diets could adversely affect bone quality-Earlier animal studies finds.

Dr. Carter was surprised by the results, he said, this may be due to reduced calcium absorption through the gut and excretion of more calcium in the urine in people who take a low carbohydrate diet.

I do not advocate a pure and strict low-carbohydrates for long-term weight loss, because it may for any reasons significantly overload the kidneys with protein and its derivatives, resulting the dieters to consume a heavy artery-clogging saturated fats and cholesterol (bad cholesterol), Dr. Carter explained.

A three months study, by USF with 30 overweight patients described - Half followed a restricted low carbohydrate diet (containing less than 20 grams of carbohydrates a day for the first month and less than 40 grams a day for the remaining two months). The control group ate a normal American diet with no restrictions.

Blood tests were done to measure the patients' bone breakdown and formation and checked for urine signs.

An insignificant difference in bone turnover between the low carbohydrate dieters and the non-dieters was found after three months trial. Surprisingly, the low carbohydrate dieters lost more weight (an average of 14 pounds) than the subjects on normal diet.

The limitation of the USF study was surfed by Dr. Carter and other researchers, and they have found, if the low carbohydrate diet was maintained beyond three months, reduced bone quality might result.

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