The study included twenty participants ages 18 to 50 with a body mass index ranging from 29 to 39. Each individual was monitored for the study, and the type of diet was randomly assigned to participants. Weight loss, flow-mediated dilation, blood pressure, and insulin and glucose levels in participants were measured every two weeks for the six week study.
Dr. Gutterman goes on to add that the higher content fat of a low-carb diet may put dieters at an increased risk of atherosclerosis, the hardening of arteries, because these diets often reduce protection of the endothelium layer that line the blood vessels of the circulatory system. Researchers found reduced flow-mediated dilation in the arm artery, an early known indicator of cardiovascular disease, in participants who were on the low-carb diet.
However, the flow-mediated dilation improved in participants on the low-fat diet suggesting a healthier artery less prone to developing atherosclerosis. Dr. Guttermen concludes, "The composition of diet may be as important as the degree of weight loss in determining the effect of dietary interventions on vascular health."