Losing Just a Few Pounds Can Reduce Health Risk

| May 1, 1996

Even though doctors say slight weight loss can greatly benefit a person's health, overweight adults feel they must lose a significant amount of weight to reduce health problems, according to a recent poll.

The overweight respondents to the poll estimated that they needed to loose approximately 30 percent of their total body weight to lessen the health risks associated with their weight. Doctors responding to the poll, however, said a modest weight loss of 5-10 percent can decrease these health risks, but the weight loss must be maintained.

"Many people set unrealistic goals for themselves," said Dr. George Bray, executive director of Pennington Biomedical Research Center in a recent press release. "Losing just a few pounds can reduce the [health] risk."

As an example Bray referred to a recent Nurses Health study which showed overweight women who lost 11 to 22 pounds decreased their risk of diabetes by 50%.

The survey polled 300 doctors and more than 500 overweight adults. The results were presented at a New York educational forum held this past March.

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Categories: Diabetes, Losing weight, Research, Weight Loss

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