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Slow and steady weight loss does not win the race

Did you know that rapid weight loss may be more effective than steady weight loss?


It was traditionally thought (and taught) that weight loss for treatment of overweight and obesity should be gradual (not more than 0.5-1kg a week).


Australian researchers compared two groups of obese patients: one was a rapid weight loss group aiming to loose 15% of their body weight (about 1.5kg/week) over 12 week by consuming very low calorie diet, another group was a gradual weight loss group aiming for 15% weight loss (about 0.5kg/week) over 36 weeks. This study found that rapid weight loss was more effective in achieving weight loss targets. Adherence in the rapid weight loss group was much better, whereas weight regain rates were similar in both groups.


The better response in the rapid group was explained by the fact that levels of ketones in the blood very quickly and dramatically went up in the rapid group. Ketones (or ketone bodies) that are produced by the liver when you are eating low calorie diets, help suppress hunger. Therefore, the rapid group patients adapted to the hunger very quickly and were able to maintain the diet better than the patients in the gradual group.


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If you are interested in further details of the study discussed above, you can find it here: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25459211

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