Article

Changes in Diet and Lifestyle and Long-Term Weight Gain in Women and Men

Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
New England Journal of Medicine (Impact Factor: 54.42). 06/2011; 364(25):2392-404. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1014296
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Specific dietary and other lifestyle behaviors may affect the success of the straightforward-sounding strategy "eat less and exercise more" for preventing long-term weight gain.
We performed prospective investigations involving three separate cohorts that included 120,877 U.S. women and men who were free of chronic diseases and not obese at baseline, with follow-up periods from 1986 to 2006, 1991 to 2003, and 1986 to 2006. The relationships between changes in lifestyle factors and weight change were evaluated at 4-year intervals, with multivariable adjustments made for age, baseline body-mass index for each period, and all lifestyle factors simultaneously. Cohort-specific and sex-specific results were similar and were pooled with the use of an inverse-variance-weighted meta-analysis.
Within each 4-year period, participants gained an average of 3.35 lb (5th to 95th percentile, -4.1 to 12.4). On the basis of increased daily servings of individual dietary components, 4-year weight change was most strongly associated with the intake of potato chips (1.69 lb), potatoes (1.28 lb), sugar-sweetened beverages (1.00 lb), unprocessed red meats (0.95 lb), and processed meats (0.93 lb) and was inversely associated with the intake of vegetables (-0.22 lb), whole grains (-0.37 lb), fruits (-0.49 lb), nuts (-0.57 lb), and yogurt (-0.82 lb) (P≤0.005 for each comparison). Aggregate dietary changes were associated with substantial differences in weight change (3.93 lb across quintiles of dietary change). Other lifestyle factors were also independently associated with weight change (P<0.001), including physical activity (-1.76 lb across quintiles); alcohol use (0.41 lb per drink per day), smoking (new quitters, 5.17 lb; former smokers, 0.14 lb), sleep (more weight gain with <6 or >8 hours of sleep), and television watching (0.31 lb per hour per day).
Specific dietary and lifestyle factors are independently associated with long-term weight gain, with a substantial aggregate effect and implications for strategies to prevent obesity. (Funded by the National Institutes of Health and others.).

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    • "Our findings are consistent with studies from high-income countries that have assessed the influence on obesity of foods that could be classified as ultra-processed. In the US, positive associations have been seen between consumption of potato chips, SSBs, and processed meat and long-term weight gain; with protective associations of unprocessed or minimally processed foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, and yogurt (Mozaffarian et al., 2011). Also, a 15-year prospective study showed that fast food consumption among young adults was directly associated with changes in body weight and insulin resistance (Pereira et al., 2005). "
    • "The greater and more rapid rises in postprandial blood glucose and insulin induced by high GI and GL diets facilitate weight gain (Ludwig, 2002). Weight change is positively associated with foods higher in GI, especially refined grains, and inversely associated with foods lower in GI, such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables (Liu et al., 2003; Koh-Banerjee & Rimm, 2003; Koh-Banerjee et al., 2004; Mozaffarian et al., 2011; Fogelholm, Anderssen, Gunnarsdottir , & Lahti-Koski, 2012). Higher protein, lower GI and GL diets also may confer an advantage during weight loss maintenance (Larsen et al., 2010), partly due to higher resting energy expenditure (Ebbeling et al., 2012). "
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