U.S. News “Best diets for 2019” list disappoints

best diets ranking disappoints

Here we go again.

Each year, U.S. News and World Reports ranks the top diets. Unfortunately, low-carb and keto are at the bottom of the list. Again. How bad was it? Atkins landed the 37th spot in the ranking, and keto tied for 38th place. 🤨

U.S. News and World Report: What’s the best diet for 2019? Experts weigh in

What diets top this list? The Mediterranean and DASH diets. Last year, the top two were the same — DASH and Mediterranean — they just swapped positions. Thus, the January, 2018 op-ed in the LA Times by Gary Taubes and Nina Teicholz prompted by last year’s rankings, entitled “U.S. News is wrong about what constitutes the best diet,” still applies.

Here are a couple of excerpts from that opinion piece:

It’s clear that U.S. News — which employed an expert panel to rate 40 diets on various criteria — merely recapitulated questionable dietary advice that has gone by a succession of names since the 1970s — “low-fat,” “DASH,” “USDA-style,” “plant-based.” The basic set of recommendations have remained the same, emphasizing plant foods (grains, cereals, fruits and vegetables) over animal products (eggs, regular dairy, meat), and vegetable oils over natural animal fats such as butter…

Why would 25 doctors, dietitians and nutritionists on the U.S. News panel choose a dietary philosophy that has — so far, at least — failed us? They might be entrenched in their opinions, supported by the industries that benefit from these diets, motivated by non-nutrition agendas such as animal-rights activism, or they might simply have fallen into the easy convenience of groupthink…

Low-carbohydrate diets have now been tested in at least 70 clinical trials on nearly 7,000 people, including a wide variety of sick and well populations, mainly in the U.S. Thirty-two of these studies have lasted at least six months and six trials went on for two years, enough time to demonstrate the lack of any negative side effects. In virtually every case, the lower-carb, higher-fat diets did as well or better than competing regimens. The cumulative evidence shows that low-carb diets are safe and effective for combating obesity, highly promising for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes, and they improve most cardiovascular risk factors.

Drilling down into some of the category rankings leads to both hope and disappointment. Keto and Atkins share second place in “Best fast weight-loss diets” behind a shakes and bars regimen. It is promising to see the panel acknowledge the weight loss that is possible with keto and low-carb, essentially ranking the diets first for people who want to eat real food, not engineered, processed meal replacements.

However, when it comes to “Best diabetes diet,” keto and Atkins fall to 24th and 28th place, respectively. This is terribly disappointing. In 2018, Virta Health demonstrated in its clinical trial that type 2 diabetes can be reversed in 60% of subjects with type two diabetes at one year using its keto-diet-plus-virtual-coaching protocol. Since the controls receiving usual care achieved neither significant improvement in any biomarkers nor medicine reduction, this is an incredibly promising result. Plus, as we reported in October, the American Diabetes Association and the European Association for the Study of Diabetes recently added low-carb diets to their list of safe and effective treatment options for patients with type 2 diabetes. Given these developments, it is negligent of the U.S. News expert panel to fail to rank a diet with such therapeutic power near the top of its list for patients with type 2 diabetes.

Consumers need helpful, up-to-date dietary advice. Misleading people with dated rankings that promote failed, status-quo diets as promising is irresponsible. When will the U.S. News panel consider the latest evidence and revise its tired rankings?

Fortunately, regardless of this lost opportunity to spread the word, many people — about 45% of would-be dieters — are planning to try low-carb or keto in 2019! When something works, the word spreads quickly, even without much help from establishment channels like U.S. News.


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New Year’s resolutions: Four steps to get on track and stay there in 2019!

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  1. Jean White
    I have been eating keto low carb for 2years loss of 35 pounds initially and maintained. No pills. Grocery costs reduced. I am 79 years old and I still enjoy a busy life.
    Reply: #17
  2. Susan
    Me too, I have been eating low carb for 2 years, 70lbs lost in first yr now maintained for a year...all health problems gone!
  3. Mark
    Nora Gedgaudas had an AHS18 talk last year that discussed how only 4-5 corporations control all the information we see, read, and hear. I highly recommend people check it out:

    AHS18 - Nora Gedgaudas Navigating the Matrix

  4. LCbetes
    Make your own list, and put it a press release. What gives US News any kind of authority on nutrition or diabetic care? It’s just clickbait and people and news orgs fall for it every time.
  5. Sheri
    Finally seeing reduced inflammation I have battled with for years. Been eating keto 4 months and love it!
  6. Susan Glait
    My husband who is pre-diabetic, and I have been eating the low carb high fat diet for close to a year. He lost 20lbs, and I lost my stubborn 13. ...and we’ve kept it off ! We have more energy, aren’t hungry, eat a wide variety of foods ( there are some amazing low carb recipes out there !! ) and look younger and definitely healthier. Having tried other diets in the last with very limited results am so pleased with this
    one !
    Thank you for all the wonderful information and motivation.
  7. 4 comments removed
  8. Aleksandra
    I think that they are diverting the truth on purpose.
    I live in Omaha and I know that this diet known by many people now and some of them are trying it.
    I personally learned about it from the Amazon; one day I have opened the page and ads on this page were all about Keto Books. I was thinking at the moment; “I haven’t heard about it before what is it about?” Than I have read the sample in one of the books and was hooked on the idea of reversing diabetes witch is a huge problem in my family genetics.
    Why the Amazon did it: I had to purchase a lot of Keto-friendly products when I started the diet when I could not find them in the regular grocery markets.
  9. 1 comment removed
  10. Lassie
    Most people wanna lose weight the easy way. Atkins and Keto are challenging the first few days. Nobody wants to work hard.

    Years ago I did keto and lost 22 lbs easily. Since menopause I’ve been unable to lost more than 6 lbs in Keto and my hormones are balanced and so is thyroid. Still it makes me feel good in the head. I will co to use the lifestyle, not the “diet”.

  11. Ailz95
    I reversed my type 2 diabetes after 15 years of it and a threat to go on insulin. I'd followed the UK guidelines correctly and my blood glucose got steadily worse. The doctor gave me 3 months to sort myself out. I found low carb and then dietdoctor.com and Dr Fung. Now I'm 40 kilos lighter and non diabetic.
  12. Sandra
    You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete - Buckminster Fuller

    Everyone that teaches, or lives HFLC knows the truth. Let those that are invested in keeping people sick write what they want.

  13. lindagist
    I also enjoy eating keto low carb and I feel stronger and lost weight for healthy life.
  14. Chris
    It is a good way to keep fit.
  15. 1 comment removed
  16. Chris
    My wife and I have been on the Keto diet for 1-1/2 years. I lost 25 pounds and she lost 15. But the best reason to stay on it (for life) is my life long trouble with triglyceride numbers went from 250 to 67 in 4 months and stayed there.
  17. Do
    In my opinion someone from either the drug industry or the sugar industry paid off the news station to report that, or whoever did the so called studies. They all know that they will lose tons of money if keto goes strong. What? No need for insulin? No need for Metformin, or all those other drugs you hear about while you are watching the news? The news stations would lose their sponsors if they reported the benefits of keto. It is laughable really, but not unexpected. When there is injustice, follow the money.

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