Another new review of all the best studies – over six months or longer – shows the same result as earlier trials: Low carb results in more weight loss.
When it comes to cholesterol low carb performs better in two measurements and worse in one. Low-carb diets result on average in slightly higher LDL cholesterol but a better profile with more beneficial HDL cholesterol and lower triglycerides (also good). Again, no surprises.
An extra 5 pounds – or more
Regarding weight loss some people will argue that the extra 2.2 kilos (about 5 pounds) lost on low carb is not that great an advantage. But remember that this is the average of every person in long randomized trials (6 months+) where very many people, regardless of diet, soon return to old habits. This is just human nature. For example, not many people manage to give up smoking on the first attempt.
In other words, the extra 5 pounds lost on low carb is the average for people following, or not following, a low-carb diet. Presumably the people actually doing the diet during the full trials did way better on average.
Also remember that people can and do lose weight on a low-fat, low-calorie diet too. It’s just harder and takes more effort and willpower. The likely underestimated 5 pounds is on top of the weight loss of the low fat diet groups.
Bottom line: According to all high-quality studies people on average lose more weight on low carb, even when not counting calories or trying to restrict food intake. Pretty fantastic.