In this study, a research team from England examined the relation between weight change and weight fluctuation (cycling), and mortality in middle-aged men.
The research team prospectively studied 5608 men aged 40 to 59 years at screening, drawn from 1 general practice in each of 24 British towns.
The team observed changes in weight during a 12- to 14-year period, and related these to mortality over an 8-year period.
|In long-term nonsmokers, any weight loss was associated with an increased risk of mortality.|
|Archives of Internal Medicine|
They found that there were 943 deaths from all causes: 458 cardiovascular disease (CVD) and 485 non-CVD deaths.
The team determined that those with stable weight or weight gain had the lowest total mortality.
However, sustained weight loss or weight fluctuation showed a significantly higher mortality risk than stable weight, even after adjustment for lifestyle variables (relative risk, 1.60, 1.50, and 1.63, respectively).
The team also found that adjustment or exclusion of men with preexisting disease markedly attenuated the increased risk of CVD, as well as total mortality associated with sustained weight loss and weight gain–weight loss.
In addition, for long-term nonsmokers, any weight loss since screening was associated with an increased risk of mortality, but this was markedly attenuated by adjustment for preexisting disease.
Recent ex-smokers showed the most marked increase in mortality associated with sustained weight loss.
Dr Goya Wannamethee’s team concluded, “The increased mortality in middle-aged men with sustained weight loss and weight fluctuation (cycling) is determined to a major extent by disadvantageous lifestyle factors and preexisting disease”.
“The evidence suggests that weight loss and weight fluctuation (cycling) in these men does not directly increase the risk of death”.