Worried about holiday weight loss? A new study shows that our scales may not be giving us the whole picture.
A long-term diet study published in the journal Circulation used MRI imaging technology to map the differences in where people store fat during 18 months of low-carb (Mediterranean-style) or low-fat diets, with or without moderate physical exercise. The study demonstrated that using our weight to assess healthy weight loss alone does not give a clear view of how beneficial dietary changes and exercise are for health. Read the press release here or the full study here.
Although both groups lost weight in the intervention, the potential health benefits resulting from where that weight was lost was different between the interventions.
- The Mediterranean/low-carbohydrate diet caused less fat to be deposited in areas that contribute to heart disease or diabetes (specifically, these people had less fat near their liver, heart, and pancreas)
- Exercise further improved loss of visceral fat, or fat stored near our organs
The study adds more evidence for the importance of exercise in healthy weight loss, as well as the diet we choose.
More information about exercise and the Mediterranean diet: