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“Fat Is The Best Thing For Those Who Want To Lose Weight” says Swedish Professor

Published on October 1, 2013,

Following the recent report from the influential Swedish SBU health committee recommending a low carb diet for weight loss a fascinating article has been written in the Swedish media featuring comments from Professor Fredrik Nyström about his delight that finally low carb, high fat diets are being taken seriously and people’s fear of eating fat is being challenged. This is an extract from a translation by the DietDoctor…

Butter, olive oil, heavy cream and bacon are not harmful foods. Quite the opposite. Fat is the best thing for those who want to lose weight. And there are no connections between a high fat intake and cardiovascular disease.

English: Illustration of obesity and waist cir...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On Monday SBU, the Swedish Council on Health Technology Assessment, dropped a bombshell. After a two-year long inquiry, reviewing 16,000 studies, the report “Dietary Treatment for Obesity” upends the conventional dietary guidelines for obese or diabetic people.

For a long time, the health care system has given the public advice to avoid fat, saturated fat in particular, and calories. A low-carb diet (LCHF – Low Carb High Fat, is actually a Swedish “invention”) has been dismissed as harmful, a humbug and as being a fad diet lacking any scientific basis.

Instead, the health care system has urged diabetics to eat a lot of fruit (=sugar) and low-fat products with considerable amounts of sugar or artificial sweeteners, the latter a dangerous trigger for the sugar-addicted person.

This report turns the current concepts upside down and advocates a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet, as the most effective weapon against obesity.

The expert committee consisted of ten physicians, and several of them were skeptics to low-carbohydrate diets at the beginning of the investigation.

One of them, however, who’s been an avid proponent of saturated fat (butter, full fat cream, bacon) since 2006, is Prof. Fredrik Nyström, Linköping, Sweden, and who has at times been scorned and sneered at to the same extent as LCHF’s “mother”, Dr. Annika Dahlqvist.

For Fredrik Nyström the report represents a victory.

- Absolutely. I’ve been working with this for so long. It feels great to have this scientific report, and that the skepticism towards low-carb diets among my colleagues has disappeared during the course of the work. When all recent scientific studies are lined up the result is indisputable: our deep-seated fear of fat is completely unfounded. You don’t get fat from fatty foods, just as you don’t get atherosclerosis from calcium or turn green from green vegetables.

Nyström has long advocated a greatly reduced intake of carbohydrate-rich foods high in sugar and starch, in order to achieve healthy levels of insulin, blood lipids and the good cholesterol. This means doing away with sugar, potatoes, pasta, rice, wheat flour, bread, and embracing olive oil, nuts, butter, full fat cream, oily fish and fattier meat cuts.

- If you eat potatoes you might as well eat candy. Potatoes contain glucose units in a chain, which is converted to sugar in the GI tract. Such a diet causes blood sugar, and then the hormone insulin, to skyrocket.

Moreover, this summer another study on the Mediterranean diet, rich in unsaturated fats (olive oil, avocados, nuts), was published, and was part of the basis for the SBU report.

- It showed that it does more harm to eat a low-fat diet than a high-fat diet. The study also advised drinking wine with the Mediterranean diet. I have long emphasized that a moderate intake of alcohol is beneficial to health and have myself done a study that confirmed a better blood lipid profile from red wine consumption. Thus, alcohol in moderation is not just OK, it’s beneficial.

There are many mantras we have been taught to accept as truths:

“Calories are calories, no matter where they come from.”

“It’s all about the balance between calories in and calories out.”

“People are fat because the don’t move enough.”

“Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.”

- Of course these are not true. This kind of nonsense has people with weight problems feeling bad about themselves. As if it were all about their inferior character. For many people a greater intake of fat means that you’ll feel satiated, stay so longer, and have less of a need to eat every five minutes. On the other hand, you won’t feel satiated after drinking a Coke, or after eating almost fat free, low-fat fruit yogurt loaded with sugar. Sure, exercise is great in many ways, but what really affects weight is diet.

The report states: “physical activity for obese people has a, if anything, marginal effect on weight loss.”…

Read the full translated article at: “Fat Trims Your Waistline”

See also: Expert Committee in Sweden Says Low Carb Diet Most Effective For Weight Loss

Expert Committee in Sweden Says Low Carb Diet Most Effective For Weight Loss

Published on September 30, 2013,

The report by the influential SBU (Swedish Council on Health Technology Assessment) recommends that eliminating carb-rich food such as bread and potatoes will speed up weight loss quicker than a conventional low-fat diet. This is from The Local SE…

SBU report cover“What was surprising about the research in our report is that we did not find any health risks associated with reducing your carbohydrate intake. Also, we were unable to establish just what types of fats you should eat,” Jonas Lindblom, project director with SBU told The Local.

Lindblom added that if Swedes are concerned about their weight then they should “cut out the soda” and said the impression that the country is getting fatter may not be accurate.

“There is some evidence that the epidemic is evening out. In Sweden it is estimated that 14 per cent of the population are obese compared with one third in the USA.”

The SBU report provided advice for a healthy diet for adults and children plus how to maintain a reduced weight. He said that quick-fix diets are generally not a long-term solution to maintaining your waistline.

“You shouldn’t have too high expectations on a diet. In the long-run it doesn’t really matter so much as inevitably the person’s adherence to it changes and they can resume old habits.

“If you are worried about your weight then eliminating carbohydrates for a short period can help. The problem is that bread and pasta are very delicious,” said Lindblom.

He added: “People need to pick the diet that suits them best and try and maintain a healthy lifestyle.”

…The SBU is an independent national authority tasked by the government with assessing health care interventions and providing advice on which sort of treatments are most effective.

The authority’s findings are also meant to impartial and scientifically reliable and serve as a basis for decision-making by policymakers, healthcare providers, and patients.

More at:  Sweden touts low-carb diet as key to weight loss

See also…

The Diet Doctor: “LCHF the Most Effective Diet” & “LCHF May be the Most Effective Weapon Against Obesity”

LowCarbHighFat: “Victory for LCHF”

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