HIGH-FAT, LOW-CARB diets may be effective at burning fat quickly but cutting back on carbohydrates like potatoes could be doing more harm than good.
That's according to research from academics at Wright State University which highlights the role spud or general carb consumption can play in fighting ageing and general bowel health.
Though excessive consumption of potatoes (especially in chip form) or other carbohydrates like pasta or bread is not advised, the study showed how moderate amounts of these foods could play an important role in extending life by up to four years.
According to the research, published in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology, insufficient carbohydrate intake can affect gut health, increasing the risk of developing illnesses like colon cancer.
It's all because of the short-chain fatty acids carbs release when your body processes them, which the scientists found can help reduce gut inflammation.
Using an artificial gut, researchers looked at the effects of a balanced Western diet, and a fats-only one.
The findings revealed that switching from a balanced diet to a high-fat, no carbohydrate regime increased the strains of bacteria that metabolise fatty acids.
However, the switch also resulted in a reduction in the amount of short-chain fatty acids and antioxidants produced in the body.
These acids and antioxidants have been found to fight against DNA damage and ageing in the body.
More worrying still, researchers also noted that a decrease in the production of short-chain fatty acids and antioxidants in the colon and gut had negative health impacts.
So, while trendy Keto diets are all the rage, potatoes and other familiar and often comforting carbohydrates might be better for you than you realise.
Just remember everything in moderation.