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Try This One Simple Change for Losing Weight Recommend Researchers

Tim Boyer's picture

Is it possible to lose weight just by making one simple change in your diet? According to a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, researchers found that by adding one change to your diet, could do almost as much for you as attempting a more complicated diet.


In the study, 240 obese adults with metabolic syndrome were randomly selected to undergo either a multicomponent diet recommended by the American Heart Association; or, just simply adding 30 grams of fiber daily to their diet for an entire year.

The purpose behind the design of this study was to evaluate a diet that consisted of just one dietary change in comparison to diets that typically focus on multiple components to promote weight loss and better overall health.

According to a Reuters Health news release, researchers hypothesize that making dieting less restrictive may actually lead to many patients gaining benefits that they otherwise would never achieve due to their not be able to stick to a more rigorous dieting plan.

Reuters Health quotes lead author Dr. Yunsheng Ma of the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester as stating that, “A ‘permissive’ dietary plan, like focusing on increasing fiber, may produce more beneficial effects than a ‘restrictive’ plan, like reducing saturated fat.”

“We chose dietary fiber because it exerts clinical benefits on several components of metabolic syndrome, including waist circumference, glucose and lipid homeostasis, and insulin control, in addition to body weight and regulation of certain inflammatory markers,” stated Dr. Ma in an email to Reuters.

What the year-long study revealed was that both groups lost weight, with the high-fiber group losing an average of nearly four and one-half pounds and the AHA diet group losing an average of nearly six pounds.

Furthermore, a disease-onset comparison during the study period revealed that seven dieters in the high fiber group developed diabetes, whereas only one dieter became diabetic in the AHA group. This demonstrates that the multicomponent diet not only resulted in a slightly more weight loss, but appears to also be more effective in preventing other symptoms of metabolic disease such as diabetes.

However, the researchers concluded that even though the AHA diet resulted in more weight loss and other health benefits not realized by a high-fiber diet alone, that still, “…a simplified approach to weight reduction emphasizing only increased fiber intake may be a reasonable alternative for persons with difficulty adhering to more complicated diet regimens.”

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The choice of fiber is an excellent example of one food that should be integrated into any weight loss planning as it not only helps with the digestive process, but also expands a dieter’s stomach making him or her feel fuller longer. In the past, Dr. Oz has advocated extra fiber during dieting, such as with this special fiber supplement that can help you lose up to 500 calories per day and this Acacia powder that is used as a natural appetite suppressant.

Dr. Ma, however, advises dieters not to get your fiber from just supplements or one food type.

"However, we ask not to rely on fiber supplements or any one food to increase daily fiber, but rather to obtain fiber from a variety of foods in their diet as suited to individual tastes and preferences,” states Dr. Ma.

Americans on average eat only about 15 grams of fiber day, whereas the American Heart Association Eating Plan recommends 25-30 grams daily from a wide range of sources such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes and whole beans.

For more about fiber and diet, here’s how to integrate the right kind of fiber into your diet that just may help you live longer.

In addition, here’s a healthy fiber cookie recipe from Dr. Oz to help get that extra fiber in for weight loss.


Single-Component Versus Multicomponent Dietary Goals for the Metabolic Syndrome: A Randomized Trial Comparison of High-Fiber and AHA Diets; Annals of Internal Medicine 2015; 162(4):248-257; Yunsheng Ma et al.

Reuters Health news release: "Focusing on fiber may work for weight loss"