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01.04.2022


Why your weight loss diet is more successful than you think

No, the study that obesity researchers at the Finnish Kuopio University published a few decades ago does not contain anything that makes you lose weight faster or better. But it might help if you need a pat on the back during your fight against the excess pounds. According to the Finns, fat loss progresses faster during a slimming diet than the mirror and the scales tell you.


Why your weight loss diet is more successful than you think


Study
The Finns did an experiment with 13 men and 14 women. The subjects were not only seriously overweight - they were obese with an average BMI of 36 - but also suffered from the metabolic syndrome. Their bodies were becoming insensitive to insulin. Four subjects were already diabetic.

The subjects followed a diet that provided them with 800 kilocalories daily for 9 weeks. During this period the subjects lost an average of 15.6 kilos. After the rapid weight loss phase, the weight maintenance phase started.

The maintenance phase lasted the rest of the year. During this period, the subjects maintained their weight with orlistat or with an adjusted diet.

Results
During the year, the researchers determined the amount of moisture in the fat layers and in the skin. They did this via electrical currents that they sent through the skin of the abdomen. And then they noticed something curious.

Click on the table below for a larger version.


Why your weight loss diet is more successful than you think


Why your weight loss diet is more successful than you think
SAF dielectric constant = measurement of the amount of fluid in the subcutaneous abdominal fat; skin dielectric constant = measurement of the amount of moisture in the skin. The higher these values, the higher the water percentage.

During both phases of the slimming diet, the amount of moisture in the fat mass and the skin increased. This is probably because the sensitivity to insulin had increased, the Finns suspect.

Conclusion
"The increase in abdominal subcutaneous water content probably results from a weight-loss-induced and possibly insulin mediated augmentation of nutritive blood flow or interstitial fluid volume", the researchers write.

"Insulin acutely increases adipose tissue blood flow, but in insulin resistant states such as obesity, blood flow is decreased. Other studies have shown that weight loss improves not only insulin sensitivity, but also increases adipose tissue blood flow".

The improved blood supply to the adipose tissues is only positive, the researchers emphasize.

"Increased adipose blood flow could have implications not only for the storage and breakdown of triglycerides in fat tissue, but also in the regulation and release of numerous hormones and peptides, including leptin, resistin, adiponectin and tumour necrosis factor-alpha."

Fat people who lose weight do better than they see in the mirror and on the scale. In the adipose tissue that is still there, the amount of water has increased and the amount of fat has decreased, and the adipose tissue is also learning how to release the stored fat back into the bloodstream.

Source:
Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 2003 Jun;27(6):677-83.

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