As we reported last week, the AHA has suggested that the popular high-protein diets may be risky for people with high blood pressure and other risk factors for heart disease. They had reviewed the Atkins, Zone, Protein Power, Sugar Busters and Stillman diets in particular.
The Association has published guidelines for evaluating high-protein diets, as follows:
- Total protein intake should not be excessive: average 50 - 100 g/day.
- Daily protein intake should be proportional to other nutrients:
- 15% of calories in protein
- 55% of calories in carbohydrates
- 30% of calories in fat
- Carbohydrates should not be omitted or severely restricted; a minimum of 100 g of carbohydrate/day is recommended.
- Selected protein foods should not contribute excess total fat, saturated fat, or cholesterol.
- The diet should be safely implemented over the long term; it should provide adequate nutrients and support a healthful eating plan to prevent increases in disease risk.
AHA notes that in evaluating high-protein diets, it's important that eating patterns follow the AHA Dietary Guidelines and include primary prevention strategies for coronary heart disease, especially in those with multiple risk factors, including obesity.
Lifestyle changes - Manage weight |
Nutrition channel: Weight Management Center
Source: AHA. Dietary protein and weight reduction, a statement for healthcare professionals from the Nutrition Committee of the Council on Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Metabolism of the American Heart Association. Circulation, Oct. 9, 2001;104:1869-1874.