Research Brief

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South Beach, Atkins, Zone, Weight Watchers compared in just published study.

 

Four popular weight-loss diets produce at best only modest long-term benefits, with few differences across the four, according to a study in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.[/column]

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[column span=”2″]Researchers examined 12 randomized, controlled studies of the Atkins, South Beach, Zone, or Weight Watchers diets. Ten studies compared one of the diets with usual care. In these, Weight Watchers was the only diet to consistently outperform usual care, but the difference in weight loss at 1 year was modest at best (range: 3.5-6.0 kg vs. 0.8-5.4 kg). In the two head-to-head trials, the Atkins and Zone diets resulted in a similar but modest weight loss. Longer-term data out to 2 years — available only for Weight Watchers and Atkins — indicated that some of the lost weight was regained over time.[/column]

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[column span=”2″]An editorialist argues passionately that the focus on individual diets or specific macronutrients is misguided and unhelpful. He proposes a simple formula: “wholesome foods in sensible combinations.”[/column]

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 The Study Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes article

Free PDF

Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes editorial (Subscription required)

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