OBJECTIVE: To assess the relationship between weight cycling and some cardiovascular risk factors in a wide sample of obese subjects.
DESIGN: Cross-sectional study with retrospective evaluation of weight and dieting history.
SUBJECTS: In all, 459 obese subjects, 340 women and 119 men (age: 19–65 y; BMI: 30–69 kg/m2).
MEASUREMENTS: Body composition and fat distribution (by bioelectrical impedance analysis and anthropometry), systolic and diastolic blood pressure, plasma glucose, total and HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, insulin and insulin resistance by HOMAir, various weight cycling indices.
RESULTS: A positive correlation between weight cycling indices, BMI and percent body fat was found in both genders. Also, the maximum absolute amount of weight regained following a single diet episode was significantly associated to insulin and HOMAir in both genders. However, these correlations disappeared when the data were controlled for age and BMI.
CONCLUSION: In obese subjects of both genders weight cycling, and in particular weight regain, does not appear to be associated with adverse effects on body composition, fat distribution or cardiovascular risk factors in an independent manner, but rather in relation to fat accumulation over years.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution
Subscribe to Journal
Get full journal access for 1 year
only $9.92 per issue
All prices are NET prices.
VAT will be added later in the checkout.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.
All prices are NET prices.
Lissner L, Bengtsson C, Lapidus L, Larsson B, Bengtsson B, Brownell K . Body weight variability an mortality in the Gothenburg prospective studies of men and women. In: Bjorntorp P, Rossner S (eds). Obesity in Europe 88: Proceedings of the First European Congress on Obesity. Libbey: London; 1989. pp 55–60.
Lissner L, Odell PM, D'Agostino RB, Stokes III J, Kreger BE, Belanger AJ, Brownell KD . Variability of body weight and health outcomes in the Framingham population. N Engl J Med 1991; 324: 1839–1844.
Hamm P, Shekelle RB, Stamler J . Large fluctuations in body weight during young adulthood and twenty-five year risk of coronary death in men. Am J Epidmiol 1989; 129: 312–318.
Blair SN, Shaten J, Brownell K, Collins G, Lissner L . Body weight change, all-cause mortality, and cause-specific mortality in the Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial. Ann Intern Med 1993; 119: 749–757.
Iribarren C, Sharp DS, Burchfiel CM, Petrovitch H . Association of weight loss and weight fluctuation with mortality among Japanese American men. New Engl J Med 1995; 333: 686–692.
Folsom AR, French SA, Zheng W, Baxter JE, Jeffery RW . Weight variability and mortality: the Iowa Women's Health Study. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1996; 20: 704–709.
Steven J, Lissner L . Body variability and mortality in the Charleston Heart Study. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1990; 14: 385–386.
Lissner L, Andres R, Muller DC, Shimokata H . Body weight variability in men: metabolic rate, health and longevity. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1990; 14: 373–383.
Hanson RL, Jacobsson LTH, McCance DR, Narayan KMV, Pettitt DJ, Bennett PH, Knowler WC . Weight fluctuation, mortality and vascular disease in Pima Indians. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1995; 20: 463–471.
Jeffery RW, Wing RR, French SA . Weight cycling and cardiovascular risk factors in obese men and women. Am J Clin Nutr 1992; 55: 641.
National Task Force on the Prevention and Treatment of Obesity. Weight cycling. JAMA 1994; 272 (Suppl 15): 1196.
Petersmarck KA, Tatelbaum HS, Bond JT, Bianchi L, Hoerr SM, Sowers MF . The effect of weight cycling on blood lipids and blood pressure in the Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial Special Special Intervention Group. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1999; 23: 1246.
Wing RR, Jeffery RW, Hellerstedt WL . A prospective study of effects of weight cycling on cardiovascular risk factors. Arch Int Med 1995; 155: 1416–1422.
Reed GW, Hill JO . Weight cycling: a critical review of the animal literature. Obes Res 1993; 1: 392–402.
Guagnano MT, Ballone E, Pace Palitti V, Vecchia RD, D’Orazio N, Manigrasso MR, Merlitti D, Sensi S . Risk factors for hypertension in obese women. The role of weight cycling. Eur J Clin Nutr 2000; 54: 356.
Olson MB, Kelsey SF, Bittner V, Reis SE, Reichek N, Nandberg EM, Merz CN . Weight cycling and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol in women: evidence of an adverse effect: a report from the NHLBI-sponsored WISE study: Women's Ischemia Syndrome Evaluation Study Group. J Am Coll Cardiol 2000; 36: 1565.
Matthews DR, Hosker JP, Rudenski AS, Naylor BA, Treacher DF, Turner RC . Homeostasis model assessment: insulin resistance an B-cell function from fasting plasma glucose and insulin concentration in man. Diabetologia 1985; 28: 412–419.
Wadden TA, Bartlett S, Letizia KA, Foster GD, Stunkard AJ . Relationship of dieting history to resting metabolic rate, body composition, eating behavior, and subsequent weight loss. Am J Clin Nutr 1992; 56: 203S.
Benini ZL, Camilloni MA, Scordato C, Lezzi G, Savia S, Oriani G, Bertoli S, Balzola F, Liuzzi A, Petroni ML . Contribution of weight cycling to serum leptin in human obesity. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 2001; 25: 721–726.
Lyon CJ, Law RE, Hsueh WA . Minireview: adiposity, inflammation, and atherogenesis. Endocrinology 2003; 144: 2195–2200.
Wing RR . Weight cycling: the public concern and the scientific data. Obes Res 1993; 1: 390–391.
About this article
Cite this article
Graci, S., Izzo, G., Savino, S. et al. Weight cycling and cardiovascular risk factors in obesity. Int J Obes 28, 65–71 (2004). https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.ijo.0802537
- yo-yo syndrome
- cardiovascular risk
- insulin resistance
- weight loss
This article is cited by
International Journal of Obesity (2017)
Effect of weight loss and regain on adipose tissue distribution, composition of lean mass and resting energy expenditure in young overweight and obese adults
International Journal of Obesity (2013)
Disordered eating behaviours and cognitions in young women with obesity: relationship with psychological status
International Journal of Obesity (2007)