Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Low Fat Diet Harms Women with Diabetes by Raising Blood Sugars

There is no media frenzy about this study, but a new study on real women (not rats or monkeys) showed that post-menopausal women with diabetes who ate a low fat diet suffered significant harm. Read the scientific abstract, as well as a discussion of the results by Jenny Ruhl of the Diabetes Update blog. Basically, the low fat, high carbohydrate diet caused very large swings in the blood sugar readings of diabetic women.

When you cut the fat out of your diet, you have to replace it with either carbohydrates or protein. And since carbohydrates drive up blood sugar readings, this is what happens when you replace the fat in your diet with carbs. Fat has very little effect on blood sugar readings, so when you replace the carbs in your diet with fat, not only is your hunger sated, your blood sugars improve.

We already know from a study of nearly 50,000 post-menopausal women that a low fat diet offers very little protection against coronary heart disease, stroke, or cardiovascular disease. Now we learn that a low fat diet actually harms this same group of women if they are already diabetic.

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