Effects on cardiovascular risk factors of weight losses limited to 5-10

Transl Behav Med. 2016 Sep;6(3):339-46. doi: 10.1007/s13142-015-0353-9.


Little is known about the cardiovascular effects of modest weight loss. To determine whether weight losses limited to 5-10 % are sufficient to produce cardiovascular health benefits, data from 401 overweight and obese adults who enrolled in a behavioral weight loss program from 2003 to 2011 were analyzed. Primary outcomes were changes in fasting glucose, triglycerides, and cholesterol. Patients who lost 5-10 % showed significant reductions in triglycerides, total cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. Patients who lost >10 % experienced significantly greater improvements in triglycerides, total cholesterol, and LDL cholesterol than patients losing less. For higher-risk patients, those who lost 5-10 % significantly reduced fasting glucose, triglycerides, and total cholesterol; those who lost >10 % improved on all risk factors (except HDL cholesterol) and to a significantly greater degree than those losing less. Five to 10 % weight losses produced improvements in cardiovascular risk factors, but greater weight losses were associated with even greater improvement.

Keywords: Cardiovascular disease; Obesity; Risk factors; Weight loss.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / complications*
  • Cholesterol / blood
  • Cholesterol, HDL / blood
  • Cholesterol, LDL / blood
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / diet therapy*
  • Overweight / complications
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Triglycerides / blood
  • Weight Loss / physiology*
  • Weight Reduction Programs / methods*


  • Blood Glucose
  • Cholesterol, HDL
  • Cholesterol, LDL
  • Triglycerides
  • Cholesterol