Whether you are just starting a New Year's diet or struggling to maintain a healthy weight, a provocative new study offers some timely guidance. It isn't so much what you eat, the study suggests, but how much you eat that counts when it comes to accumulating body fat.canada goose outletThe findings are the latest in a string of studies to challenge claims that the secret to healthy weight loss lies in adjusting the amount of nutritional components of a diet—protein, fat and carbohydrates. The diet industry has offered dozens of strategies recommending raising or lowering carbohydrates, protein or fat.In the study, to be published in Wednesday's issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, 25 young, healthy men and women were deliberately fed nearly 1,000 excess calories a day for 56 days, but with diets that varied in the amounts of protein and fat. While those on a low-protein diet—about 5% of total calories—gained less weight than those on a normal- or high-protein regimen, body fat among participants in all three groups increased by about the same amount. canada goose cheap outletTypical protein consumption is about 15% of calories, while the U.S. government recommends it make up between 17% and 21% of total daily calories. "The body was confronted with excess calories, but it didn't care where they came from," said George Bray, a researcher at Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Baton Rouge, La., and lead author of the report. "The only thing it can do is put them into fat." The findings suggest that it matters little whether a diet is high or low in fat, carbohydrates or protein, it's calories that build body fat. After eight weeks, all participants in the study gained weight. The 16 men and nine women made similar gains. The low protein-diet group gained about seven pounds, about half the 13.3 pounds added on by the normal protein participants and 14.4 pounds put on by the high protein group.Researchers said that previous studies had led them to expect that a high-protein diet would lead to lower weight gain. Yet despite the differences in protein and fat intake, the level of body fat increased by essentially the same amount among all the participants. Turkey, chicken, tuna and pork chops were among the protein sources. The menu items were the same for each participant, Dr. Bray said, but a participant on the low-protein diet would have gotten more mayonnaise and less tuna in a tuna fish salad, while the high-protein diet was extra tuna with little mayonnaise.canada gooseAn editorial accompanying the study said that because the diet increase "the risks of overnutrition beyond that detected by body mass index…the magnitude of the obesity epidemic may have been underestimated." The editorial, by Zhaoping Li and David Heber of the Center for Human Nutrition at the David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, urged clinicians to focus on "fat reduction rather than simply weight loss" in treating patients with obesity.