There is a strategy that can easily be considered an alternative to the AHA diet: eat more fiber, lose weight.
Dieting is never easy. It basically involves changing your lifestyle. From the food you buy to the way you cook it and the amount you’re allowed to eat. And with this constant change in diet trends, it’s hard to keep up. It’s much easier if you just follow a set of rules. One of them is: eat more fiber.
There is a new study published in this week’s Annals Of Internal Medicine journal according to which, adding 30 grams of fibers to one’s diet can help with weight loss. The study was conducted by researchers from the University Of Massachusetts Medical School who came to the conclusion that this dieting method had results similar to what was obtained through the American Heart Association (AHA) diet.
The diet suggested by the American Heart Association consists of 13 components and the participants who followed these instructions lost just a little more weight that those who had done the fiber diet. According to lead researcher Dr. Yunsheng Ma, these differences are minor and insignificant:
“The more complex AHA diet resulted in slightly larger (but not statistically significant) weight loss, but a simplified approach emphasizing only increased fiber intake may be a reasonable alternative for individuals who find it difficult adhering to a more complicated diet.”
There were 240 overweight people participating in the fiber study, all of them experiencing metabolic syndrome symptoms such as high blood pressure, increased levels of blood sugar and cholesterol. With the help of the fiber diet, the participants managed to lose weight, lower their blood pressure and even improve insulin activity.
According to the researchers, the effects of this diet can be enhanced by combining fibers with fruits, vegetables and proteins (but not those coming from supplements). For a fiber-rich meal, one can use whole grains like barley and oats, vegetables such as spinach and carrots. One can also include chickpeas, lima beans and fruits like apples and bananas. For proteins, one should consume seeds and nuts.
Another benefit of this diet is that it works on a longer term and it is easy to follow as it doesn’t imply starving yourself. Fibers can make you feel full quite fast.
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