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Three-Year Chronic Consumption of Low-Carbohydrate Diet Impairs Exercise Performance and Has a Small Unfavorable Effect on Lipid Profile in Middle-Aged Men

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Three-Year Chronic Consumption of Low-Carbohydrate Diet Impairs Exercise Performance and Has a Small Unfavorable Effect on Lipid Profile in Middle-Aged Men

Karol Pilis et al. Nutrients.

Abstract

The objective of this research was to determine whether chronic (average 3.58 ± 1.56 years) deliberate adherence to low carbohydrate diets (LCDs) is associated with selected markers of metabolism, risk factors of cardiovascular disease (CVD), body mass and physical performance in apparently healthy middle-aged men (n = 12). The control group comprised age, body mass and height matched men using mixed diets (MDs). The diets used were registered for 7 days and analyzed in terms of the energy, carbohydrate, fat and protein contents. It was found that the diets used were isoenergetic, yet varied considerably in carbohydrate and fat content. The LCDs significantly intensified the ketogenesis process, increased resting blood total cholesterol (TC), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), and heart rate, (HR) and decreased respiratory exchange ratio (RER) in relation to MD subjects. An exercise trial revealed significant impairment of exercise in subjects following the LCDs. The results showed that in the case where the subjects of two investigated groups did not differ in their somatic variables, long-term adherence to the LCDs was associated with substantially reduced exercise performance in apparently healthy subjects, along with an association with a small unfavorable effect on their lipid profile.

Keywords: carbohydrate restriction; cardiovascular disease; diets; men; metabolism.

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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