The annoying answer here as with many questions in nutrition is ‘it depends’, so let me explain a little more before we decide if this could be a good strategy for you or not…
When it comes to the 3 main macro-nutrient groups, here is how they stack up on the calorie front when we consume just 1 g of each:
Carbohydrates = 4 calories in every gram
Protein = 4 calories in every gram
Fat = 9 calories in every gram
Now, as you can see fat actually has more than double the number of calories in every gram, so reducing fat intakes within your nutrition can lead to more of a significant reduction of total calories in comparison to reducing protein and/or carbs. Reducing 100g carbs = a reduction of 400 calories, whereas this number comes in at a reduction of 900 calories when reducing the same amount of 100g of fat.
Logic therefore states that going low-fat would be a great strategy. Now for some people this may be a fantastic thing to do. Let’s say your diet is actually already quite high in things like dairy and other fats, so getting low fat milk and cheese in particular would be a great start. The thing is that unfortunately although we have saved on the fat - products like low fat yogurts are generally more high in sugars instead, as the carbohydrate content has now been increased.
What if your diet wasn’t too high in fat to begin with? We actually need fat within our diets to assist with many processed which happen within the body from brain function to joint health and the storage of vitamins… so in this case going low-fat when you’re already consuming low levels of fat may not be the best solution for you.
When it comes to weight loss every single successful dietary strategy simply creates a calorie deficit (consuming less calories than you’re burning off each week!) so if reducing fat intakes in a way which still meets your daily needs and preferences, while creating the end result of weight loss for you then GREAT!
You may have found the perfect strategy for you.
But if it doesn’t for whatever reason there are plenty more strategies out there for you to try, so don’t worry!
I hope this helps you understand why going low fat is a super popular strategy, but may or may not be the best strategy for you to try along your journey!