Weight loss related clinical trials are a great way for scientists, doctors and even us lowly consumers to learn more about what helps, what doesn’t, how much to use and how much is too much. Studies examining ways to overcome obesity are very complex and challenging as there are so many factors to take into account. It’s easy to tough to obtain consistent results and even tougher for researchers to interpret them accurately.
Still, there are some weight loss related clinical trials that have managed to make headlines and that have changed the way we think of dieting. Some are linked to individual foods or ingredients. Others have to do with our attitudes, behaviors or the balance we establish in our lifestyles.
Consider the following notable weight loss related clinical trials and what they mean for the way you’re dieting:
1. Dietary fat doesn’t cause obesity
A study published in the The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology (August 2016 – Volume 4, Number 8) showed that the consumption of fats in foods isn’t what leads to being overweight or obese. In fact, over 5 years, the study followed both men and women on a high-fat, Mediterranean diet, which involves regularly consuming olive oil and/or nuts. Those individuals lost more waist circumference than men and women who followed a reduced fat diet.
2. Plant protein could make you fuller, longer than meat protein
The Food and Nutrition Research (October 2016 – Volume 60, Issue 1) journal recently published a study showing that eating proteins from plant sources are more satiating and that feeling of fullness lasts longer than when proteins from animal sources are consumed.
3. Diet has a greater impact on weight loss than exercise
A study in the JAMA (October 2010 – Vol 304, Number 16) examined the impact of diet and physical activity interventions on severely obese individuals. What they found was that diet had the greatest impact, but that exercise remained important. Diet alone had more of an impact than exercise alone. However, people who both dieted and exercised lost the most from their waist circumference.
4. Probiotics may help lower sugar cravings
If you have a sweet tooth, this may be of interest to you. Research presented at the November 2016 American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions showed that eating probiotic foods may help to lower blood sugar levels. This could be promising for people at risk of diabetes, but may also help to keep blood glucose spikes and crashes from causing sugar cravings in people trying to lose weight.
5. Dieting puts you in a better mood
You may associate dieting with being hungry, exhausted and cranky, but a study published in the JAMA Internal Medicine journal (June 2016 – Volume 176, Number 6) showed that the opposite is true. Overweight people following a healthy calorie reduction were in better moods, slept better and had better sex lives.