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Weight Loss Combined With Exercise Best Regimen for Obese Older Adults

Weight Loss Combined With Exercise Best Regimen for Obese Older Adults

Weight loss alone or exercise alone improves physical function and ameliorates frailty in obese older adults. However, a combination of weight loss and exercise provides greater benefit than either intervention alone.

Villareal and coworkers conducted a randomized controlled trial of 107 obese older adults. Patients were randomly assigned to a control, weight-management (diet), exercise, or weight-management-plus-exercise (diet-exercise) group. The primary outcome was the change in the score on the modified Physical Performance Test, a measure of frailty. Secondary outcomes included other measures of frailty, body composition, and quality of life.

The mean scores on the Physical Performance Test increased more in the diet-exercise group (21%) than in the diet (12%) or exercise group (15%); control group scores increased by 1%. The peak oxygen consumption improved more in the diet-exercise group (17%) than in the diet (10%) or exercise group (8%). The score on the Functional Status Questionnaire increased more in the diet-exercise group (10%) than in the diet group (4%). Body weight decreased by 10% in the diet group and by 9% in the diet-exercise group.

The authors noted that frailty is an important problem in older patients because it leads to loss of independence and increased morbidity and mortality.

 
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