Obesity drugs and lifestyle change can bring long-lasting weight loss

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In a study from Weill Cornell Medicine, scientists 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.

They found weight loss of more than 10% provides big health benefits.

Previous evidence on the effectiveness of anti-obesity medications for long-term weight loss maintenance in the real world has been limited to 1 to 2 years.

This study is unique because 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.

In the study, the team reviewed data from 428 patients at an academic weight management center.

All patients received counseling focused on a low-glycemic diet and exercise from 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. The researchers found 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.

They say a 10% weight loss is clinically strong because it is linked to improvements in cardiovascular risk factors like diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and obstructive sleep apnea as well as improvements in mobility and overall quality of life.

The team says anti-obesity medications are an underutilized treatment option for obesity and can prevent obesity-related diseases including diabetes and heart 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 popular weight loss diets linked to heart disease and cancer, and this exercise has unique benefits for weight loss.

For more information about weight loss, please see recent studies that a green diet can reduce belly fat much better, and a Keto diet could help control body weight and blood sugar in diabetes.

The study was conducted by Michael A. Weintraub et al.

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