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Objective: The purpose of this study was to investigate whether pre-treatment subject characteristics and weight change during the first weeks of a low-calorie diet (LCD) can predict weight loss outcomes at the end of a controlled 8-week weight loss period in overweight and obese adults. Subjects: A total of 932 overweight and obese subjects of both genders were included at eight European centers, and underwent an 8-week LCD period. Results: The weight loss at week 8 was positively correlated with initial body weight (Spearman's =ρ0.62), height (=ρ0.43), body mass index (=ρ0.43), waist (=ρ0.48) and hip circumference (=ρ0.33), sagittal diameter (=ρ0.45), fat mass (=ρ0.35) and fat-free mass (=ρ0.52), and gender (=ρ-0.36) (all <P0.01). In the multivariate regression model, adjusted for center, only initial body weight, early weight loss (week 1) and weight loss at week 3 were significant predictors of weight loss outcome at week 8: weight loss (kg) at week 80.090.046 × baseline body weight (kg)-0.311 × weight loss (kg) at week 1+1.284 × weight loss (kg) at week 3 (R2 68%, P<0.0001). A weight loss of 2.6 kg at week 1 during the LCD period was identified as the optimal cut-off predictor for at least 10 kg weight loss at week 8. Conclusions: This study suggests that initial body weight, early weight loss (week 1) and weight loss at week 3 are predictors of final weight loss during an 8-week LCD, and may be used as early biomarkers of subsequent responses to an LCD diet. © 2010 Macmillan Publishers Limited All rights reserved.

Original publication




Journal article


European Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Publication Date





994 - 999