Is there an optimal diet for weight management and metabolic health?

Thom, G. and Lean, M. (2017) Is there an optimal diet for weight management and metabolic health? Gastroenterology, 152(7), pp. 1739-1751. (doi: 10.1053/j.gastro.2017.01.056) (PMID:28214525)

137779.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.



Individuals can lose body weight and improve health status on a wide range of energy (calorie) restricted dietary interventions. In this paper, we have reviewed the effectiveness of the most commonly utilized diets, including low-fat, low-carbohydrate and Mediterranean approaches in addition to commercial slimming programmes, meal replacements and newly-popularized intermittent fasting diets. We also consider the role of artificial sweeteners in weight management. Low-fat diets tend to improve LDL-cholesterol most, whilst lower-carbohydrate diets may preferentially improve triglycerides and HDL-cholesterol, however differences between diets are marginal. Weight loss improves almost all obesity related co-morbidities and metabolic markers, regardless of the macronutrient composition of the diet, but individuals do vary in preferences and ability to adhere to different diets. Optimizing adherence is the most important factor for weight loss success, and this is enhanced by regular professional contact and supportive behavioral change programs. Maintaining weight losses in the long-term remains the biggest challenge, and is undermined by an ‘obesogenic’ environment and biological adaptations that accompany weight loss.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Lean, Professor Michael and Thom, Dr George
Authors: Thom, G., and Lean, M.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing
Journal Name:Gastroenterology
ISSN (Online):1528-0012
Published Online:15 February 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 The AGA Institute
First Published:First published in Gastroenterology 152(7):1739-1751
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record