WholeFoods Magazine published a two part interview with Dr. Eric C. Westman. The interview is entitled: The Health Benefits and Safety of Low-Carb, High-Fat Diets – Part One. The article was written By: Dr. Richard Passwater, WholeFoods Magazine Science Editor, Published in WholeFoods Magazine, January 2016

The Health Benefits and Safety of Low-Carb, High-Fat Diets – Part Two, Written By: Dr. Richard Passwater, WholeFoods Magazine Science Editor, Published in WholeFoods Magazine, February 2016

The overall interview and comments by Westman are interesting. Nothing really new – but a lot of good information in one place.  The Reference section gives a good lead in to further reading and study.

Westman distinguished the original Atkins diet from the New Atkins diet that he co-wrote.

Westman: Yes, “The New Atkins Diet” involves the use of “net carbs,” a calculation that subtracts fiber grams from the total carbohydrate grams. …

Passwater: What is the advantage of using net carbs versus total carbs?

Westman: By counting only net carbs, you are only considering the grams of carbohydrate that affect your blood sugar level, not total carb grams, since fiber doesn’t sabotage your body’s use of fat.

“The New Atkins Diet” is a departure from the original Atkins Diet because it uses net carbs instead of total carbs to begin the initial phase of the program. The New Atkins Diet works very well for most people. I still use the original Atkins Diet approach of using total carbs if an individual is extremely obese or has a serious metabolic problem like diabetes or metabolic syndrome.

Westman also gave his definition of the difference between a Ketogenic Diet and a Low Carb diet.

Westman: Low-carb diets can be categorized by the upper limit of grams of carbohydrates recommended per day. A very-low-carbohydrate diet, or ketogenic diet, typically has fewer than 50 grams of carbohydrates per day, but some individuals need to be even lower than 50 grams. A low-carbohydrate diet is defined as having 50–150 grams of carbohydrates per day.

As a guy who has been doing this for almost 9 years, except for those times that I allow myself a high carb indulgence, I vary between 25-75 grams of net carbs per day. I do not know when I am in Ketosis or not. I do not know when my body is using ketones or glucose. This works for me.

Passwater asked Westman: “How much weight did your clinic patients lose after a year? What percentage retained their weight loss after a year?” The response is encouraging to those of us who have spent a lifetime fighting the Weight Loss fight.

Westman: When carbohydrate restriction (low-carb, high-fat dieting) is used for weight loss, the speed of weight loss is quite variable, but typically is about one to two pounds per week—leading to 50–100 pounds per year of weight loss. The speed of weight loss is faster when individuals stick to the program all the time. Like most medical outpatient treatment programs, about 50% of the people who come through the program will still be in the program after a year.

Our graduates of a four-week program lose an average of 5% of their initial body weight while they are here, and a landmark 80% maintain or continue to lose weight one year later. A striking 85% also report significant health and quality-of-life improvements, such as:

• Reduced risk of heart disease, diabetes and obesity-related conditions,
• Reduced disability from arthritis and chronic pain,
• Improved endurance, mobility, strength and flexibility,
• A healthier, more balanced approach to eating and activity,
• Improved ability to manage stress and enhanced mood,
• A total change of mindset about diet and exercise that works with their lifestyle and enables them to maintain progress at home.

Take a few minutes and read through these two articles. Worth the read.