Why Eating Carbs-Rich Food in Moderation is Still the Best
Eating carbohydrates has been a source of confusion to many as there have been recommendations to consume carbs-rich foods, while others say low carb is better. Yet these are suggestions either for people with a high demand for energy in relation to their physical activities, or for those looking to cut down on calories in order to lose weight. A research study says that as far as proper nutrition goes, eating carbohydrates in moderation is still the best when looking to improve one’s life longevity.
A 2018 research report published in the The Lancet Public Health journal, gives information about the findings of a study involving more than 15,000 Americans whose carbo-eating habits were tracked for 25 years. The findings on those who maintained either low carb or high carb diets revealed higher risks of dying early during the study period, when compared to those who simply kept to eating carbohydrates in moderation.
To better explain their findings, the report cited as an example those who consumed carb-rich foods in moderation starting at age 50, when the average life expectancy is at 83 years old. This group showed they lived longer by four years, when compared to those who maintained a low-carb diet as their average life expectancy was up to age 79 only. Still, the life longevity among the low-carb eaters who participated in the study depended on the type of protein they consumed.
Type of Protein Source Can Also Impact Life Expectancy of Low-Carb Dieters
Based on their findings, the low-carb dieters who consumed animal-based proteins and fats, were linked to increased risks of early death. On the other hand, those who had low-carb diets but at the same time ate plant-based protein and fats, had links to those who had reduced risks of early deaths.
The lead author of the study, Dr. Sara Seidelmann, a cardiovascular research fellow at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, said that their data suggest that if one is to follow a low-carb diet, eating plant-based proteins and fats as carb replacements could actually boost life longevity.
Methodology Used by Researchers on Study About Carbs and Longevity
The more than 15,000 American adults whose diets were monitored for 25 years were between ages 45 and 64, and living in a selected community in four states, namely Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi and North Carolina. The study started sometime in the late 80s, in which after six years, the participants completed surveys that asked about the kind of food they ate and how often they had them. During the period of study, 6,283 of those who participated in the initial phases of the study had died.
This was how the researchers found links to carbohydrate intakes and life longevity, as those with high or low carb consumption had greater risks of dying early as opposed to those who ate carbs-rich foods in moderation.
Using data pulled from seven similar studies, the researchers performed a separate analysis related to the consumption of carbs-rich food of more than 432,000 individuals located in 20 countries. The results of the analysis confirmed the researchers’ findings that 20% of deaths that occurred earlier than the average life expectancy, were linked to high or low carb intakes.