Lower fat diet may ward off diabetes even without weight loss

A research has indicated that small differences in diet – even without weight loss – can significantly affect risk for diabetes.

In this study, 69 healthy, overweight people who did not have diabetes — but were at risk for it — were placed on diets with modest reductions in either fat or carbohydrate for eight weeks.

“At eight weeks, the group on the lower fat diet had significantly higher insulin secretion and better glucose tolerance and tended to have higher insulin sensitivity,” said Barbara Gower, professor in the Department of Nutrition Sciences at UAB and lead author of the study.

“These improvements indicate a decreased risk for diabetes,” added Gower.

Gower says the unique aspect of this study is that the results were independent of weight loss.

“People find it hard to lose weight. What is important about our study is that the results suggest that attention to diet quality, not quantity, can make a difference in risk for type 2 diabetes,” she added.

The study is detailed in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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