Weight-Loss Diets, Adiponectin, and Changes in Cardiometabolic Risk in the 2-Year POUNDS Lost Trial

J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2016 Jun;101(6):2415-22. doi: 10.1210/jc.2016-1207. Epub 2016 Apr 7.


Context: Compelling evidence suggests that the beneficial effects of weight-loss diet interventions on improvement of cardiometabolic risk factors may be partly through modulating secretion of adiponectin from adipose tissue.

Objective: To investigate the effects of long-term weight-loss diets with different compositions of macronutrients on longitudinal changes in circulating adiponectin concentrations and how such changes, if they exist, affect cardiometabolic risk.

Design, setting, and participants: In the 2-year Preventing Overweight Using Novel Dietary Strategies trial, 811 overweight or obese adults were randomly assigned to 1 of 4 diets varying in macronutrient intakes. The current analysis was restricted to participants who had baseline adiponectin measurement (n = 768). Circulating concentrations of adiponectin and cardiometabolic outcomes were repeatedly measured at baseline, 6 months, and 2 years.

Main outcome measures: Circulating concentrations of adiponectin and cardiometabolic risk factors.

Results: Weight-loss diet interventions significantly increased circulating adiponectin concentrations over 2 years, similarly in 4 diet groups (P value for difference >.05). We found that the increase of adiponectin was significantly associated with reduction of waist circumference and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, but associated with increase of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (P < .001 for each), after adjusting for age, sex, ethnicity, follow-up time, diet group, baseline body mass index, baseline level of respective outcome trait, and concurrent weight change.

Conclusions: Our findings indicate that long-term interventions by weight-loss diets varying in macronutrients similarly increase circulating adiponectin, which may particularly improve abdominal fat distribution and lipid metabolism independently of weight change.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adiponectin / blood*
  • Adult
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / blood
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology
  • Diet, Reducing*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metabolic Diseases / complications
  • Metabolic Diseases / etiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / blood
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / diet therapy*
  • Overweight / blood
  • Overweight / complications
  • Overweight / diet therapy*
  • Risk Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Waist Circumference
  • Weight Loss / physiology*


  • Adiponectin