Weight Maintenance Is Better than Weight Loss

Susan Farley
Published Online: Saturday, October 1, 2005

The results of a Finnish study suggest that weight loss among overweight people may adversely impact their mortality. Researchers studied participants in a Finnish Twin Cohort over a 24-year period and found that deliberate weight loss among overweight people has mortality outcomes similar to those with weight gain among overweight people.

In 1975, participants filled out a questionnaire about their efforts to lose weight, and a 1981 questionnaire recorded any weight changes. The participants' progress was followed until 1999 or death. Researchers found that those who lost or gained weight between 1975 and 1981 were ~40% more likely to die than those who maintained a steady weight.

Ms. Farley is a freelance medical writer based in Wakefield, RI.

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