Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Still, experts agree there's no one-size-fits-all diet

By Amy Norton

HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Sept. 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For people who want to lose weight and boost their heart health, cutting down on carbohydrates may work better than trimming dietary fat, a new study suggests.

In a small clinical trial of obese adults, researchers found that those assigned to follow a low-carbohydrate diet lost more weight over a year than those who followed a low-fat plan.

They also had bigger improvements in their cholesterol and triglyceride levels, the research team reports in the Sept. 2 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

"On average, they lost 8 pounds more, and lost more body fat mass," said researcher Dr. Tian Hu, a doctoral fellow at Tulane University School of Public Health in New Orleans.

And while some experts have raised concerns that low-carbohydrate diets could be less than heart-healthy, these findings suggest otherwise, said Dr. Lydia Bazzano, who also worked on the study.

"Low-carb diets have traditionally been seen as potentially risky," said Bazzano, a professor of nutrition research at Tulane.

Yet in this study, people on the low-carb diet saw slightly greater improvements in their levels of "good" HDL cholesterol and triglycerides -- another type of blood fat. That could have been due to the bigger weight loss, Hu said, or to the greater amounts of "good" unsaturated fat in their diets.

But he also noted that the study ran for just one year, and it's not clear how people on either diet would fare in the long run.

There are other caveats, too, according to a dietitian who was not involved in the study.

For one, people on the low-carbohydrate diet didn't stick to it all that well. The regimen called for no more than 40 grams of carbohydrates a day -- the equivalent of about two slices of bread. But, by the end of the year, people in the low-carbohydrate group were averaging 127 grams of carbohydrates a day, noted Sonya Angelone, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

"I do think that most people eat too many carbohydrates," she said. So eating fewer carbohydrates, and choosing high-quality ones -- fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains -- is a sound idea, according to Angelone.

Healthy Recipe Finder

Browse our collection of healthy, delicious recipes, from WebMD and Eating Well magazine.

Top searches: Chicken, Chocolate, Salad, Desserts, Soup

Heart Rate Calculator

Ensure you're exercising hard enough to get a good workout, but not strain your heart.

While you are exercising, you should count between...