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06-06-2010 | Cardiometabolic | Article

Long-term weight loss confers favorable lipid changes


Free abstract

MedWire News: Women who maintain a reduction in abdominal fat following weight-loss intervention show beneficial changes in their blood lipid profile, a Japanese study suggests.

The authors say that long-term weight maintenance following short-term weight loss should therefore “be encouraged for obese people.”

The study, by T Matsuo (University of Tsukuba, Ibaraki) and team, involved 54 postmenopausal obese women who managed to lose at least 10% of their visceral abdominal fat (VAF) volume during a 14-week weight-loss intervention.

The mean VAF decrease was 34 cm2 (29.7%) and this was accompanied by significant improvements in blood pressure, lipids, and glucose.

Following the weight-loss intervention the women were observed for a further 2 years. During this time, VAF was stable or fell in 26 women (“maintainers”) and increased in 28 women (“gainers”).

A comparison of VAF maintainers and gainers revealed a number of interesting differences. Specifically, levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol rose in maintainers but were unchanged in gainers, while levels of triglycerides and the ratio of total to HDL cholesterol increased in gainers but were unchanged in maintainers.

Interestingly, the increase in HDL cholesterol did not occur during the initial 14-week weight-loss period but became evident during the 2-year follow-up.

Writing in the International Journal of Obesity, Matsuo et al note that around half of the cohort succeeded in maintaining weight-loss long-term, an impressive figure that supports the effectiveness of calorie restriction.

Furthermore, long-term maintenance of weight loss was associated with favorable changes in lipid parameters, including HDL cholesterol and triglycerides.

They conclude: “Additional research is needed to increase our understanding of the association between dietary values and changes in metabolic risk factors.”

MedWire ( is an independent clinical news service provided by Current Medicine Group, a trading division of Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2010

By Joanna Lyford