Total Weight Loss Tied to Improved Health
When it comes to health, further research supports the notion that steadily losing weight over time (and keeping it off) is more important than losing weight quickly. In a study recently published in the Journal of Obesity, researchers assessed weight loss and changes in metabolic health markers such as waist circumference, blood pressure, fasting glucose, triglyceride levels, and HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels among more than 11,000 weight loss program participants over a period of about one year. Weight loss rates were defined as fast (≥ two pounds/week), recommended (one to two pounds/week), or slow (< one pound/week). In the first three to six months, fast weight loss had greater improvements in overall waist circumference and blood pressure than recommended or slow weight loss, but when total weight loss was taken into account, there was no significant difference among the weight loss rates for improving any of the health markers measured.