Tel Aviv: The Atkins Diet, high in protein and fat, is safer than a low-fat diet, a new study reveals.
In a two-year trial dieters lost more on the low-carbohydrate regime than they did on a low-calorie diet.
The Mediterranean diet, with lots of vegetables and olive oil was also more successful than calorie cutting.
The Israeli study, conducted by the Gen-Gurion University of the Negev, put 322 volunteers on either a low-calorie diet; a Mediterranean calorie-restricted diet, high in fibre and low in red meat; or a low-carbohydrate diet with no calorie limit.
Those on the low-fat diet lost 6.5lbs in two years; the Mediterranean diet 10lbs and 10.3lbs on the low-carbohydrate diet.
The Atkins Diet was devised by US heart doctor Robert Atkins, and involves eating lots of protein, while eleminating carbohydrates such as rice, potatoes and pasta.
Although successful in weightloss it has fallen out of favour because of concerns over the high fat content which could lead to heart disease and kidney problems.