However, people with obesity who experienced more weight cycling were actually less likely to develop diabetes than other study participants. The team suggested that the health benefits of weight loss may help offset the negative effects of weight cycling for obese individuals looking to lower their diabetes risk.
There was no association between weight cycling and cardiovascular event.
The researchers also noted that previous research has also linked weight cycling with higher mortality and cardiovascular events in patients with coronary artery disease.
“This study shows that weight cycling can heighten a person’s risk of death,” said lead study author Hak C. Jang, M.D., Ph.D, “However, we also concluded that weight loss as a result of weight cycling can ultimately reduce the risk of developing diabetes in people with obesity.”
According to the team, some estimates suggest that around 80 percent of people who lose weight will gradually regain it, ending up at the same weight as they were before the diet, or even heavier. The Endocrine Society’s Scientific Statement on what causes obesity has found that this is because after weight loss, the body usually reduces the amount of energy it uses when at rest, during exercise and daily activities, but increases hunger, creating conditions for weight gain.