In a landmark report that comprised the “world’s largest diet study” – researchers concluded that the most effective dietary regimen for preventing and treating obesity is one that is relatively high in lean protein (25% of calories) and low in its glycemic response. (Glycemic response refers to how high and how fast the carbs you eat raise your blood sugar.) The researchers placed 773 adults and their children (total of 827 kids) on 1 of 5 types of eating plans. The group on the high protein/low glycemic regime had the most success. One of the most remarkable findings was that the children in the families assigned to this type of eating experienced a spontaneous drop in the prevalence of overweight from 46% to 39% over the 6-month study period (New England Journal of Medicine; 2010: 363, Pediatrics 2010: 126 ). This occurred with no dieting, no calorie counting and no limits on the amounts of foods consumed. The restrictions were simply on the types of or qualitative aspects of the foods served at home. The proteins consumed in these high protein/low glycemic households were lean meats, poultry, seafood, low-fat dairy products, eggs, beans and nuts. The carbohydrates were of a low to moderate glycemic index and included: any vegetables except potatoes and corn; physically intact or coarse whole grains like oatmeal, brown rice and whole grain bread with lots of kernels; temperate fruits like berries, apples, and pears with limits on tropical fruits like bananas, pineapple and mango. High glycemic carbohydrates, namely white rice, white potatoes, white flour products and sugary foods/sweets were restricted. Given what we now know about how protein and various carb foods impact appetite, this is not at all surprising, but it is wonderful to have the scientific data to back it up.
Appetite control is the Holy Grail for achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight. The best way to control your appetite is to eat lean protein at your meals, along with an abundance of low glycemic carbs and minimal to no Great White Hazards (white flour products, white rice, white potatoes, sugar/sweets).
I am pleased to tell you that both of my books, Dr. Ann’s 10-Step Diet and Weigh Less for Life are in perfect keeping with this important, cutting-edge new science.