Fruit and Vegetable Consumption in Overweight or Obese Individuals: A Meta-Analysis

West J Nurs Res. 2020 Apr;42(4):306-314. doi: 10.1177/0193945919858699. Epub 2019 Jun 29.


Researchers have shown that fruit and vegetable consumption (FVC) promotes weight loss and prevents weight gain, thereby reducing risks for chronic health conditions. We conducted a meta-analysis to examine the overall effects of FVC interventions on weight loss for those with body-mass index (BMI) >25; we follow-up with moderator analyses to determine if effects varied based on participants, interventions, methods, or source characteristics. Extensive literature searches were conducted, resulting in 16 studies and providing 17 comparisons, across 3,719 participants. The overall summary effect was large (-2.81kg; p<.001). Several moderators were significant for increased weight loss: low socio-economic status (-4.99kg; p<.001), higher baseline BMI (slope=-0.29; p=.047), longer interventions (slope=0.012; p<.001), and recruitment setting [health care/programs (-3.7kg; p<.001); work/academic settings (-5.2kg: p<.001)]. Future researchers should investigate varying intervention lengths and examine specific needs of subgroups-higher versus lower socio-economic status, and overweight versus obese.

Keywords: Meta-analysis; fruit and vegetable; obese; overweight.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis

MeSH terms

  • Body Mass Index
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Female
  • Fruit*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / diet therapy*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Vegetables*
  • Weight Loss*