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Paleo Diet Increases Weight Gain

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Following a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet for just 8 weeks can lead to rapid weight gain and health complications, according to research published in Nutrition and Diabetes (

Lead author, A/Prof Sof Andrikopoulos of The University of Melbourne, says this type of diet, exemplified in many forms of the Paleo diet, is not recommended, particularly for people who are already overweight and lead sedentary lifestyles.

“Low-carbohydrate, high-fat diets are becoming more popular, but there is no scientific evidence that these diets work. In fact, if you put an inactive individual on this type of diet, the chances are that person will gain weight,” said Andrikopoulos, who is President of the Australian Diabetes Society.

The research tested whether high-fat and low-carbohydrate (LCHF ) foods would benefit the health of people with pre-diabetes. The research team took two groups of overweight mice with pre-diabetes symptoms and put one group on the LCHF diet. The control group ate a normal diet.

After 8 weeks, the group on the LCHF gained more weight, their glucose intolerance worsened and their insulin levels rose. The paleo diet group gained 15% of their body weight and their fat mass doubled from 2% to almost 4%.

“To put that in perspective,...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.