Scientists from Weill Cornell Medicine found that overweight and obese people maintained an average weight loss of 10.6% over 3 to 5 years with a program of lifestyle changes in combination with anti-obesity medications.
Weight loss of more than 10% provides big health benefits.
The research was presented at the Endocrine Society’s 2022 annual meeting and was conducted by Michael A. Weintraub et al.
Previous research has found the effectiveness of anti-obesity medications for long-term weight loss maintenance is limited to 1 to 2 years.
In the study, the team analyzed weight loss maintenance over 3-5 years in more than 400 adults with overweight and obesity who were taking weight-loss medications.
They reviewed data from 428 patients at a weight management center.
All patients received counseling focused on a low-glycemic diet and exercise by the obesity medicine specialist during their office visits. Patients were also offered additional counseling with a registered dietitian.
Medical therapy included FDA-approved and off-label weight-loss medications.
The most common medications used were metformin, phentermine and topiramate. At the final visit, patients were taking an average of two medications for weight management.
The patients were followed for about 5 years. They lost and maintained an average weight loss of 10.6%, which was maintained with medical therapy and lifestyle interventions over 3 to 5 years.
The team says a 10% weight loss is clinically significant because it is linked to improvements in heart risk factors like diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obstructive sleep apnea as well as improvements in mobility and overall quality of life.
Rates of obesity are approaching 40% in the United States.
Anti-obesity medications are an underutilized treatment option for obesity and can prevent obesity-related diseases including diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
This research supports the utility of anti-obesity medications in achieving long-term weight loss maintenance.
If you care about weight loss, please read studies about exercise that has unique benefits for weight loss, and these eating habits could cause too much weight gain.
For more information about wellness, please see recent studies about new guidance for exercise in type 2 diabetes, and results showing vitamin D3 could help people fight COVID-19 and other infections.
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