Diets both low and high in carbohydrates were linked with an increase in mortality. Low-carb diets that replace carbohydrates with proteins and fats from plant sources were associated with lower risk of mortality compared to those that replace carbohydrates with proteins and fat from animal sources.
The study was published in The Lancet Public Health journal. This study of more than 15,400 people from the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study (ARIC) in the USA found that diets both low (< 40% energy) and high (>70% energy) in carbohydrates were related to an increase in mortality, while judicious consumers of carbohydrates (50-55% of energy) had the lowest risk of mortality.
The findings, confirmed studies on carbohydrate intake including more than 432,000 people from over 20 countries, also suggest that not all low-carbohydrate diets appear equal eating more animal-based proteins and fats from foods like beef, lamb, pork, chicken and cheese instead of carbohydrate was associated with a greater risk of mortality. Alternatively, eating more plant-based proteins and fats from foods such as vegetables, legumes, and nuts was linked to lower mortality.