Following a Low-Fat Diet Influences Breast Cancer, Heart Disease and Diabetes Outcomes, New Study Finds
Women who follow a low-fat diet may experience health benefits related to breast cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, according to a new study.
Researchers included nearly 49,000 postmenopausal women, ages 50 to 79. The participants were randomly assigned to either follow a low-fat eating plan or their usual diet.
Those in the low-fat group were asked to reduce their fat intake from about 35 percent to 20 percent of their daily calories.
After tracking the women for a median of 8-and-a-half years, the researchers found no significant differences between the intervention and control groups.
But longer-term follow-up between about 13 and 19 years was associated with significant benefits in the low-fat group — including a 15 to 35 percent reduction in deaths from all-causes following breast cancer, a 13 to 25 percent reduction in insulin-dependent diabetes and a 15 to 30 percent reduction in coronary heart disease among those who were healthy at the start.
The authors say that cutting the fat led participants to increase their intake of vegetables, fruits, and grains.
One co-author adds, “While there are many diets that provide short-term benefits like weight loss, this study scientifically validates the long-term health effects of a low-fat diet.”