Counting calories is hard to keep up! It might be easier to follow some basic guidelines. What eating habits are found in people who are slim?
These eating habits are associated with a lower BMI:
- Avoid processed meat (average BMI was 4.5 units higher with each daily serving!)
- Eat more fruits and vegetables (average BMI was 0.94 units lower with *each* daily serving)
- Choose a vegan diet (vegans’ BMI is 5.2 units lower than non-vegetarians)
- Choose a vegetarian diet (vegetarians’ BMI is 3.1 units lower than non-vegetarians)
- Choose a pesco-vegetarian diet (pesco-vegetarian’s BMI is 2.5 units lower than non-vegetarians)
- Eat more nuts (BMI was 2.4 units lower in those consuming the most nuts)
- Eat breakfast (BMI is 1.5 units higher in those who skip breakfast)
- Avoid red meat (average BMI was 1.2 units higher with each daily serving)
- Avoid sugary drinks (average BMI was 0.8 units higher with each daily serving)
- Avoid eating meat (average BMI was 0.5 units higher with each daily serving)
- Eat home cooked meals (those who ate >5 per week reduced their odds of being overweight by 28%)
- Avoid calorie-dense foods (those who ate the most calorie-dense foods had a 27% higher risk of being overweight)
- Eat less dairy (those who ate the most dairy had a 13% higher chance of being overweight)
- Eat a mediterranean-style diet (adherents had a lower BMI than those who followed other doctor-prescribed diets, such as DASH)
- Eat a high protein diet
- Eat a high carb diet
- Avoid high fat foods
Plant based diets may lower BMI
Pesco-Vegetarians have lower BMI than vegans, vegetarians or non-vegetarians (n=156,317)
We used cross-sectional data of 156,317 adults aged 20–49 years. Association between types of vegetarian diet (vegan, lacto-vegetarian, lacto-ovo vegetarian, pesco-vegetarian, semi-vegetarian and non-vegetarian) and measured body mass index (BMI) were estimated using multivariable logistic regression adjusting for age, gender, education, household wealth, rural/urban residence, religion, caste, smoking, alcohol use, and television watching. Results: Mean BMI was lowest in pesco-vegetarians (20.3 kg/m2) and vegans (20.5 kg/m2) and highest in lacto-ovo vegetarian (21.0 kg/m2) and lacto-vegetarian (21.2 kg/m2) diets.
Vegans’ BMI is 5 points lower than non-vegetarians (n=60,903)
The study population comprised 22,434 men and 38,469 women who participated in the Adventist Health Study-2. RESULTS: Mean BMI was lowest in vegans (23.6 kg/m(2)) and incrementally higher in lacto-ovo vegetarians (25.7 kg/m(2)), pesco-vegetarians (26.3 kg/m(2)), semi-vegetarians (27.3 kg/m(2)), and nonvegetarians (28.8 kg/m(2)). CONCLUSIONS: The 5-unit BMI difference between vegans and nonvegetarians indicates a substantial potential of vegetarianism to protect against obesity.
Vegans have 65% lower risk of becoming overweight than omnivores; vegetarians have 46% lower risk (n=55,459)
Data analyzed in this cross-sectional study were from 55,459 healthy women. RESULTS: In multivariate, adjusted logistic regression analyses, self-identified vegans had a significantly lower risk of overweight or obesity (odds ratio = 0.35) than did omnivores, as did lactovegetarian (odds ratio = 0.54) and semi vegetarians (odds ratio = 0.52). CONCLUSIONS: Even if vegetarians consume some animal products, our results suggest that self-identified semivegetarian, lactovegetarian, and vegan women have a lower risk of overweight and obesity than do omnivorous women.
Every year on a vegan diet lowers risk of obesity by 7% (n=49,098)
We studied how several sub-types of vegetarian diets affect metabolic traits, including waist circumference and BMI. The study included 4415 lacto-ovo-vegetarians, 1855 lacto-vegetarians and 1913 vegans; each vegetarian was matched with five non-vegetarians based on age, sex and study site. In the longitudinal follow-up, each additional year of vegan diet lowered the risk of obesity by 7 %.
A more plant-based diet associated with lower BMI over time (n=9,633)
In the 9,633 participants, baseline plant-based diet score ranged from 21.0 to 73.0. In multivariable-adjusted analyses, higher adherence to a plant-based diet was associated with lower BMI, waist circumference, fat mass index, and body fat percentage across a median follow-up period of 7.1 years. CONCLUSIONS: In this population-based cohort of middle-aged and elderly participants, a higher adherence to a more plant-based, less animal-based diet was associated with less adiposity over time, irrespective of general healthfulness of the specific plant- and animal-based foods.
Lowest BMIs with vegetarian and high-carb diets; highest BMIs with low-carb diets (n=10,014)
The prototype diets included vegetarian (no meat, poultry, or fish on day of survey) and non-vegetarian. The nonvegetarian group was further subdivided into low carbohydrate (less than 30% of energy from carbohydrate), medium (30% to 55%), and high (greater than 55% of energy). Within the high carbohydrate group, participants were classified as having Pyramid or non-Pyramid eating patterns. The Pyramid group was defined as 30% or less of energy from fat and at least one serving from the five major food groups in the USDA Food Guide Pyramid. Finally, the non-Pyramid group was further subdivided into low fat (less than 15% of energy from fat) and moderate fat (15% to 30% of energy from fat). SUBJECTS: 10,014 adults, aged 19 years and older. RESULTS: Analyses indicate that diet quality as measured by healthy eating index was highest for the high carbohydrate Pyramid group (82.9) and lowest for the low carbohydrate group (44.6). Energy intakes were low for the vegetarians (1,606 kcals) and high carbohydrate/low fat group (1360 kcals). BMIs were lowest for women in the vegetarian group (24.6) and the high carbohydrate/low fat group (24.4); for men, the lowest BMIs were observed for vegetarians (25.2) and the high carbohydrate Pyramid group (25.2). CONCLUSIONS: Diets that are high in carbohydrate and low to moderate in fat tend to be lower in energy. The lowest energy intakes were observed for those on a vegetarian diet. The BMIs were significantly lower for men and women on the high carbohydrate diet; the highest BMIs were noted for those on a low carbohydrate diet.
Vegetarian/vegans have 57% lower risk of obesity; pesco-vegetarians have 53% lower risk (n=592)
Of these women and men, 25% were either vegan or lacto-ovo-vegetarians (labelled ‘vegetarian/vegans’), 13% were pesco-vegetarian and 62% were non-vegetarian. Corresponding odds ratios for obesity in vegetarian/vegans and pesco-vegetarians, compared with non-vegetarians, were 0.43 and 0.47, respectively; and for abdominal obesity 0.54 and 0.50, respectively.
Each daily serving of meat: processed/red meat/any increase BMI by 4.5/1.2/0.5 points (meta-analysis)
Ninety-eight studies including 20 on red meat, 6 on processed meat, and 12 on total meat. A 100 gram per day increase in red meat consumption was associated with increased BMI [1.2 kg/m3] as well as increased proportion of overweight (7.4%) and obese individuals (8.3%). Each 100 g/d increase of processed meat was associated with increased BMI of 4.5. Trends of BMI values across increasing categories of total meat intake resulted significant, but smaller than those observed for specific type of meat (0.5 BMI increase and 7.6% increased prevalence of obese individuals for each 100 g/d total meat increased intake).
High consumption of processed/red meat associated with higher BMI by 1.37/1.32 units (meta-analysis)
A systematic review and a meta-analysis were conducted with 21 and 18 studies, respectively (n = 1,135,661). The meta-analysis (n = 113,477) showed that consumption of higher quantities of red and processed meats was a risk factor for obesity (OR: 1.37). In comparison to those in the lowest ntile, subjects in the highest ntile of red and processed meat consumption had higher BMI (mean difference: 1.37 for red meat; mean difference: 1.32 for processed meat) and waist circumference (mean difference: 2.79 for red meat; mean difference: 2.77 for processed meat). The current analysis revealed that red and processed meat intake is directly associated with risk of obesity, and higher BMI and waist circumference.
Nuts, fruits and veggies lower BMI; dairy and sweets increase weight
BMI of those consuming the most nuts is 2.4 units lower than those consuming the least (n=34,831)
Nut and nutrient intake from 34,831 women was estimated. Higher nut consumption was associated with lower body weight (difference between highest and lowest consumption categories from adjusted model: 6.1 kg;) body mass index (BMI, 2.4 units difference), and waist circumference (2.6 cm difference). Findings support existing literature around beneficial effects of nut consumption and suggest that benefits may be larger among omnivores.
Overall, dairy products are associated with higher BMI; full-fat dairy may be preferable (n=114,682)
We included 114,682 Dutch adults, aged ≥18 years. Dairy consumption was quantified by a food frequency questionnaire. Total dairy showed a positive association with abdominal overweight (odds ratio Q1 ref vs. Q5: 1.09) and with BMI-defined overweight (odds ratio Q5 1.13) and obesity (OR Q5 1.09). Skimmed, semi-skimmed and non-fermented dairy also showed positive associations with overweight categories. Full-fat dairy showed an inverse association with overweight and obesity (odds ratio Q5 for obesity: 0.78). Moreover, inverse associations were observed for yoghurt and custard and positive associations for milk, buttermilk, flavoured yogurt drinks, cheese and cheese snacks. CONCLUSIONS: Total, skimmed, semi-skimmed and non-fermented dairy; milk; buttermilk; flavoured yogurt drinks; total cheese and cheese snacks showed a positive association with overweight categories, whereas full-fat dairy, custard and yogurt showed an inverse association with overweight categories.
Higher fiber intake is marginally related to lower BMI (n=9341)
We investigated the association between daily serves from the “grain (cereal)” group and its effect on fiber and adiposity. Data from Australian adults were used (n = 9341). Compared to core grain avoiders (0 serves), high consumers (6+ serves/day) were: less likely dieting, overweight or obese. After adjustment for age, sex and energy intake, there was an inverse relationship between core grain serves intake and BMI, waist circumference and a positive relationship with fiber. Model adjustments for diet and lifestyle factors resulted in a smaller difference in waist circumference (p = 0.006) and BMI (p = 0.006). Core grain serves was marginally clinically significant for lower adiposity.
High fiber diet may protect against obesity (n=260)
We conducted a 7-day food weighing method among 260 women of which 60 are obese. RESULTS: Obese women are found to consume less fiber than non-obese women (21.73 vs 26.25 g/day). Very high and significant correlations were observed between dietary fiber intake and the parameters investigated: BMI, waist circumference. CONCLUSIONS: This study provides additional support to the inverse association between fiber consumption and weight gain and the waist circumference.
Higher intake of whole grains associated with lower BMI (review)
All the prospective epidemiological studies demonstrate that a higher intake of whole grains is associated with lower BMI and body weight gain. However, these results do not clarify whether whole grain consumption is simply a marker of a healthier lifestyle or a factor favoring “per se” lower body weight. Habitual whole grain consumption seems to cause lower body weight by multiple mechanisms such as lower energy density of whole grain based products, lower glycemic index, fermentation of non digestible carbohydrates (satiety signals) and finally by modulating intestinal microflora.
High intake of fruit, but not veggies or fiber, may reduce odds of becoming overweight by 13%(n=18146)
We studied 18,146 women aged ≥45 y from the Women’s Health Study with an initial body mass index (BMI) of 18.5 to <25 kg/m². RESULTS: During a mean follow-up of 15.9 y, 8125 women became overweight or obese (BMI ≥25 kg/m²). Intakes of total fruits and vegetables, fruits, and dietary fiber were not associated with the longitudinal changes in body weight, whereas higher vegetable intake was associated with greater weight gain. In multivariable analyses, controlling for total energy intake and physical activity along with other lifestyle, clinical, and dietary factors, women in the highest vs. lowest quintile of fruit intake had an hazard ratio of 0.87 of becoming overweight or obese. No association was observed for vegetable or dietary fiber intake. The association between fruit intake and risk of becoming overweight or obese was modified by baseline BMI where the strongest inverse association was observed among women with a BMI <23 kg/m² (hazard ratio: 0.82).
Increasing fruit and vegetable consumption leads to weight loss over 5 years (n=4357)
A total of 4357 participants aged 18-65 years were included in this study. An increase in fruit and vegetable consumption by 100 g was associated with a 211 g weight loss and a decrease in BMI by 0.94 kg/m2 in men. CONCLUSIONS: Increase in fruit and vegetable consumption was associated with statistically significant weight loss and decrease in BMI among Chinese men, and, although suggested, weight loss among women was not significant. Considering the protective effect of FV on human health, increasing FV consumption in the Chinese population is recommended.
BMI is lower in those who snack on vegetables, higher in those who snack on sweets (n=233)
Snacking behaviors and dietary intake were examined cross-sectionally among 233 adults participating in a community-based worksite nutrition intervention. RESULTS: Percent of snacking energy from vegetables was significantly associated with lower BMI. Percent snacking energy from desserts and sweets was significantly associated with a higher BMI. CONCLUSIONS: Snack food choices, but not total energy from snacks, frequency, or time of day, were significantly associated with BMI.
Soft drink consumption may lead to higher BMI (n=8195)
Less than half (41·7%) of the population consumed soft drinks; the mean consumption was 36·2 ml/d. The prevalence of sedentary lifestyle increased with the frequency of soft drinks consumption. Daily soft drinks consumption significantly increased the risk of low adherence to the Mediterranean diet (OR = 0·57 v. top tertile of Mediterranean diet score). Multiple linear regression analyses, controlled for potential confounders, revealed that an increment in soft drinks consumption of 100 ml was associated with a 0·21 kg/m² increase in BMI. CONCLUSIONS: Soft drinks consumption was positively associated with BMI.
Junk food and sugary drinks may lead to higher BMI; sugary drinks may be worse than junk food (n=7873)
Mean discretionary food and beverage consumption (foods high in saturated fat and/or added sugars, added salt or alcohol and low in fiber) was 631 g, providing 2721 kJ of energy intake (72 % from foods; 28 % from beverages). Total discretionary food/beverage consumption was higher those with higher BMI and those with lower fruit or vegetable intake. Discretionary beverage consumption was more strongly associated with BMI than discretionary food consumption. Conclusions: Total discretionary food/beverage consumption as well as discretionary foods alone and discretionary beverages alone were associated with BMI in Australian adults. In addition, high intakes were associated with lower consumption of fruit and vegetables.
Consumption of high sugar drinks associated with 60% higher risk of being overweight; dietary fat and fiber not significant
The relationship between an at-risk BMI and energy intake from macronutrients, high sugar drinks, high-fat foods, saturated fatty acids, and traditional foods were examined. Analyses were adjusted for age, sex, region, kcalories, walking, smoking and alcohol consumption. RESULTS: Consumption of high-sugar drinks (>15.5% E) was significantly related with having an at-risk BMI (OR = 1.6), whereas the % energy from total carbohydrate evaluated as a continuous variable and as quartiles was inversely related to an at-risk BMI.
Water consumption not linked to BMI (n=7735)
The majority of the population failed to meet the Adequate Intake (AI) values for total water intake (82%) and total fluids intake (78%) with the elderly at highest risk (90%–95%). The contributions of plain drinking water, other beverages and food moisture to total water intake were 44%, 27%, and 29%, respectively, among children and adolescents, and 37%, 37% and 25% among adults. The main sources of other beverages were full-fat plain milk and regular soft drinks for children and adolescents, and tea, coffee, and alcoholic drinks for adults. No associations were found between total water consumption and body mass index (BMI) for adults and BMI z-score for children and adolescents.
The diet of morbidly obese includes more red meat, sweets; less fruits, nuts, cereal (n=6184)
Nationally representative samples aged 19 years and above from three consecutive waves of Nutrition and Health survey in Taiwan (n = 3,071; 1,673; and 1,440; respectively) were analyzed. And 39 morbidly obese (BMI ≥35 kg/m2) cases from the two recent surveys compared with 156 age, gender, and survey-matched normal weight control. RESULTS: Morbidly obese dietary pattern featured a higher consumption frequency of red meat, processed animal products, and sweets/sweetened beverage, but lower frequencies of fresh fruits, nuts, breakfast cereal, and dairy products.
Snacks, fast food and fizzy drinks increase BMI; fruits, vegetables and fish are protective (n=2083)
The aim of this study was to examine empirical dietary patterns in UK adults and the Nutrient-based Diet Quality Score (n = 2083; mean age 49 years). Four patterns explained 13.6% of the total variance: ‘Snacks, fast food, fizzy drinks’, ‘Fruit, vegetables, oily fish’, ‘Meat, potatoes, beer’, and ‘Sugary foods, dairy’. ‘Snacks, fast food, fizzy drinks’ was associated positively with: body mass index (BMI). ‘Fruit, vegetables, oily fish’ was negatively associated with BMI.
BMI is higher with higher percentage of fat in diet (n=45)
Twenty-two lean and 23 obese subjects were characterized by dietary history (food frequency questionnaire), and anthropometrics. As shown previously, body mass index was positively correlated with percent of energy intake as fat.
The calorie density of foods may be most relevant to BMI
Healthy BMI associated with eating less energy-dense foods (n=9551)
Data were from a cross-sectional sample of 9551 adults ≥18 years. Energy density (kcal/g) was calculated for each food item reported during a 24-h dietary recall. RESULTS: Men classified as lean reported consuming a greater proportion of total energy from very low- and low-energy density foods, compared to men considered obese. Similarly, women classified as lean reported intakes of very low-energy density foods and low-energy density foods. Men and women with obesity reported greater proportions of energy from high-energy density foods with significant statistical trends. Similar patterns were observed for intakes of proportions of very low-, low-, and high-energy density foods and waist circumference. CONCLUSION: Higher proportions of energy intake and food weight contributed by very low- and low-energy density foods are associated with lower BMI (and waist circumference).
Eating calorie-dense foods may increase BMI (meta-analysis)
Of the 37 studies included in this review, most articles reported a direct association between dietary energy density and obesity. We performed a meta-analysis on 23 of these studies. In comparison with the lowest NTILE of dietary energy density, subjects in the highest NTILE of dietary energy density had significant weight gain, greater adjusted mean body mass index (BMI), and risk of excess adiposity (odds ratio: 1.27). We did not observe significant associations between dietary energy density and risk of elevated BMI and abdominal obesity. CONCLUSION: The present review showed that dietary energy density was directly associated with risk of excess adiposity, higher weight change, and BMI. Lower dietary energy density should be considered a prevention strategy for obesity.
BMI is higher when meals have higher energy density (calories per gram) (n=1451)
This cross-sectional study examined how energy density (kJ/g; calculated on the basis of solid food only) in meals and snacks is associated with BMI and waist circumference. On the basis of the data from 7-d weighed dietary record, all eating occasions were divided into meals or snacks based on time or contribution to energy intake in 1451 British adults aged 19-64 years. After adjustment for potential confounders, in both men and women, meal energy density based on energy intake contribution showed positive associations with BMI and waist circumference. In addition, meal energy density based on time was positively associated with waist circumference in men and snack energy density based on time was positively associated with BMI in women. In conclusion, the findings suggest stronger associations of meal energy density with overall diet quality, BMI and waist circumference compared with snack energy density.
Larger portions of high calorie foods may increase BMI (n=636)
In the present study, the association between the portion size of the most energy-dense foods and BMI was investigated. A representative sample of 636 British adolescents was used. Food portion sizes were estimated for the most energy-dense foods. A positive association was observed between total energy intake and BMI. When eliminating the effect of under-reporting, larger portion sizes of a number of high-energy-dense foods (biscuits, cheese, cream and cakes) were found to be positively associated with BMI among normal reporters. The portion sizes of only high-fibre breakfast cereals and high-energy soft drinks (carbonated) were found to be positively associated with BMI among under-reporters. These findings emphasise the importance of considering under-reporting when analysing adolescents’ dietary intake data.
High quality foods may reduce obesity
In normal weight women, high quality diet reduces chance of obesity by 32% (n=19,885)
We assessed diet quality, as measured by the Alternate Healthy Eating Index-2010 and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet score in relation to incident obesity. We restricted the analysis to 19,885 nonobese women aged 21-39 y at baseline. Among women with consistent diet scores in 1995 and 2001, higher diet quality scores were inversely associated with obesity incidence: the multivariable hazard ratios comparing highest with lowest quintiles of the Alternate Healthy Eating Index-2010 and DASH scores were 0.76 and 0.68, respectively, among women with a BMI in the normal range (18.5-24.9 kg/m2) at baseline. There were no significant associations among women who were overweight at baseline. The findings suggest that a high-quality diet that is sustained over time is associated with reduced obesity risk among young African American women with a normal BMI at baseline.
Poor diet quality is only associated with higher BMI in overweight individuals (n=13536)
We used confidential, individual-level data on 6325 adult men and 7211 nonpregnant adult womento construct 2 diet quality indices (the Diet Quality Index and and the Healthy Eating Index) and BMI. RESULTS: We found that there were 2 latent classes (low-BMI and high-BMI components), and that Diet Quality Index and and the Healthy Eating Index indices were negatively associated with BMI in the high-BMI component. Subgroup analyses revealed that the association between diet quality and obesity was stronger in women. CONCLUSIONS: Diet quality is associated with lower BMI in high-BMI individuals in Canada.
High protein diets are associated with lower BMI (n=11,111)
Total, nondairy animal, dairy, and plant protein intake were estimated with the use of 24-h recall data (n = 11,111; ≥19 y). RESULTS: Mean protein intake was 82.3 g/d (animal: 37.4 ± 0.5 g/d; plant: 24.7 ± 0.3 g/d; and dairy: 13.4 ± 0.3 g/d). Both BMI and waist circumference were inversely associated with animal and plant protein intake. CONCLUSIONS: Diets higher in plant and animal protein, independent of other dietary factors, are associated with cardiometabolic benefits, particularly improved central adiposity.
Mediterranean diet more strongly associated with lower BMI than four other common diets, including DASH (n=1194)
We aimed to determine associations of 5 diet quality scores [American Heart Association diet score, Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH), Healthy Eating Index, Mediterranean diet score, and Alternative Healthy Eating Index] with 2-y changes in cardiometabolic risk factors in adults 45-75 y old. Methods: Data from the Boston Puerto Rican Health Study were analyzed (n = 1194). Results: Mediterranean diet score was significantly associated with lower 2-y waist circumference and body mass index. Similar but weaker associations were observed for the Healthy Eating Index with BMI. The American Heart Association diet score was inversely associated with BMI. Neither the Healthy Eating Index nor Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension was significantly associated with any variable. Traditional Puerto Rican foods consumed by individuals with high Mediterranean diet scores included vegetables and meats in homemade soups, orange juice, oatmeal, beans and legumes, fish, whole milk, corn oil, and beer. Conclusions: The Mediterranean diet comprises food components and scores associated with a favorable cardiometabolic profile over 2 y in Puerto Rican adults. An overall healthy diet may be particularly beneficial for maintaining a lower BMI.
Mediterranean-type diet associated with better lean mass/BMI ratio among women (n=1509)
Cross-sectional data were available for 1,509 participants (68.2±3.7 years). RESULTS: appendicular lean mass/BMI was higher in women with a higher adherence to the modified Mediterranean-type diet. In the risk factor-adjusted general linear regression analysis, a higher adherence to the modified Mediterranean-type diet was associated with higher appendicular lean mass/BMI in women and better appendicular lean mass/fat mass ratio when compared to a medium and a low diet quality. No significant associations were seen in men.
Diet that is richer in sodium and lower in potassium/magnesium associated with overweight and obesity (n=406)
The study was conducted in a group of 406 women who were randomly recruited from the general population of those aged above 55 years. RESULTS: Normal body weight individuals were characterised by lower sodium intake per 1000 kcal of diet than obese class II and III individuals (BMI ≥ 35.0 kg/m(2)). Overweight individuals were characterised by lower potassium and magnesium intake per 1000 kcal of diet than obese class I individuals (BMIϵ < 30.0; 35.0 kg/m(2)). The majority of individuals was characterised by insufficient potassium, calcium and magnesium intake. No differences in satisfying nutritional needs between BMI groups were observed for all minerals.
Fast food consumption may lead to higher BMI (n=200)
Subjects: Two hundred adults, aged 18–60 years. Cross-sectionally, fast-food consumption was significantly associated with higher daily total energy intake, empty calories and BMI.
High fat, low carbohydrate diet associated with obesity (n=294)
Anthropometric, dietary and physical activity data were obtained for 325 offspring aged 8-21 years and both their parents. However, 294 single offspring and their parents were used for analysis. RESULTS: A two-step cluster analysis revealed two distinct clusters: obesogenic and nonobesogenic. The obesogenic cluster, which consisted of 83% of families with at least one parent or offspring overweight, had significantly higher intakes of fat, saturated fat but lower carbohydrate intakes among both offspring and parents.
Dietary fat more relevant than energy intake to obesity (n=141)
After adjustment for age, physical activity, alcohol, and smoking, the inverse correlation between relative weight and energy intake was significantly reduced to r = -0.02. Obese women reported higher intakes of total fat, and relative weight was significantly correlated with intakes of total fat (r = 0.20) and saturated fatty acids (r = 0.16). These data highlight the importance of considering factors that may confound the relationship between energy intake and obesity, and they suggest that fat intake may play a role in obesity that is independent of total energy intake.
Those eating home cooked meals > 5 times per week are 28% less likely to be overweight (n=11,396)
We used baseline data from a United Kingdom population-based cohort study of adults aged 29 to 64 years (n = 11,396). RESULTS: More frequent consumption of home cooked meals was associated with greater likelihood of having normal range BMI and normal percentage body fat. Those consuming home cooked meals more than five times, compared with less than three times per week, were 28% less likely to have overweight BMI, and 24% less likely to have excess percentage body fat. CONCLUSIONS: In a large population-based cohort study, eating home cooked meals more frequently was associated with lower adiposity.
Families who eat at the dinner table have lower BMIs (n=338)
In this study of 190 parents and 148 children, the relationship between their BMIs and everyday family dinner rituals was examined using both correlation and regression analysis (controlled for educational level of parents). RESULTS: Families who frequently ate dinner in the kitchen or dining room had significantly lower BMIs for both adults and children compared to families who ate elsewhere. Additionally, helping cook dinner was associated with higher BMI for girls, and remaining at the table until everyone is finished with eating was associated with lower BMI for boys. CONCLUSIONS: Dinner tables may be one place where social support and family involvement meet – both of which relate to the BMI of children as well as parents. Family meals and their rituals might be an underappreciated battleground to fight obesity.
Eating low quality snacks may increase BMI (n=1451)
This cross-sectional study examined how nutritional quality of meals and snacks is associated with body mass index (BMI), and waist circumference. RESULTS: After adjustment for potential confounders, only the Food Standards Agency score of snacks (higher scores = lower nutritional quality) was positively associated with BMI and waist circumference in women.
Energy intake, but not heathy eating score, related to high BMI… especially in those who are obese (n=9214)
The sample included 9,214 adults aged 18-80 years. Quantile regression analyses were conducted to examine the association between BMI and the following predictors: age, sports activities, socio-economic status, healthy eating index-NVS II, dietary knowledge, sleeping duration and energy intake as well as status of smoking, partner relationship and self-reported health. RESULTS: Age, socio-economic status, self-reported health status, sports activities and energy intake were the strongest predictors of BMI. The important outcome of this study is that the association between BMI and its predictors varies along the BMI distribution. Especially, energy intake, health status and socio-economic status were marginally associated with BMI in normal-weight subjects; this relationships became stronger in the range of overweight, and were strongest in the range of obesity.
Diet quality not as relevant as physical activity to BMI (n=4999)
The purpose of this study was to examine the associations among moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), diet quality, and weight status within and across age groups in US adults. METHODS: Participants included 2587 men and 2412 women age 20 to ≥70 yr. RESULTS: Across age groups, physical activity was lower in the older age groups for both men and women, whereas diet quality was higher. BMI and waist circumference were also higher in the older age groups. Within age groups, moderate-to-vigorous physical activity was inversely associated with BMI and waist circumference for men and women in nearly every age group. Diet quality was inversely associated with the weight status variables only in men age 30-39, 40-49 (BMI only), and 50-59 yr and women age 50-59 yr. CONCLUSIONS: Moderate-to-vigorous physical activity was very consistently related to weight status in both genders. The relation between diet quality and weight status was less consistent.
Eating fewer meals earlier in the day may reduce BMI
Eating a large breakfast and fewer meals overall may decrease BMI (n=48,673)
A longitudinal analysis was undertaken using data from 48, 673 individuals monitored over an average period of 7.43 . The number of meals per day, length of nighttime fasting, eating breakfast and timing of the largest meal of the day were used as independent variables. RESULTS: Consumption of 1 and 2 meals a day was associated with decrease in BMI (-0.04 and -0.02 kg.m-2 per year, respectively). On the other hand, consumption of 3 or more meals a day was associated with increase in BMI, in a linear relation. BMI of those who skipped breakfast increased (0.029 kg.m-2 per year) as compared to no BMI change in those who had breakfast. Those, whose largest meal of the day was breakfast, recorded no significant change in BMI. On the contrary, the largest supper was associated with the greatest increase in BMI (0.034 kg.m-2 per year). CONCLUSION: Our results indicate that eating less frequently, consuming breakfast and having the largest meal in the morning hours may be effective measures to prevent weight gain.
People with lower BMI eat breakfast and less calorie dense foods (n=12316)
We combined dietary data to determine the energy density (in kcal/g) of foods and nutritive beverages and the energy density of foods only (n = 12,316; >or=20 y). RESULTS:The energy density of 24-h dietary intake was lower among breakfast reporters than among nonreporters. Women breakfast reporters (but not men) had lower BMI than did nonreporters (27.9 compared with 29.4). With increasing breakfast energy density, nonbreakfast energy density and fat intake increased. BMI increased with increasing breakfast energy density in men but with increasing nonbreakfast energy density in women. CONCLUSIONS: Our results support recommendations to encourage breakfast consumption and suggest that the energy density of breakfast was associated with diet quality, overall diet energy density, and body weight.
Snacking is associated with lower BMI in those with healthy diets, but not unhealthy diets (n=6951)
Diet quality might affect the association between eating frequency and obesity. This cross-sectional study used data of 6951 participants aged 19-93 years. Eating frequency was inversely associated with each obesity indicator, including body fat percentage, BMI and waist circumference, showing a significant linear trend. In addition, the association between eating frequency and each obesity indicator was significantly altered according to diet quality. In the stratified analyses according to diet quality, eating frequency had a significant inverse association with body fat percentage, waist circumference and BMI in the high diet quality groups, but not in the low diet quality groups. This study suggests that eating frequency is inversely associated with the obesity indicators when diet quality is high, but not when it is low in Korean adults.
Frequent snacking associated with higher BMI (n=1487)
Snacking frequency was positively associated with BMI and waist circumference, irrespective of the definition of snacks. CONCLUSIONS: Higher snacking frequency was consistently associated with lower diet quality and higher adiposity measures.
Skipping breakfast increases risk of being overweight by 18%; late dinner does not
Participants comprised 45,524 men employees aged 20-49 years who were followed up for 3 years. RESULTS: Of the participants, 17,706 (38.8%) skipped breakfast and 25,987 (57.1%) had a late dinner. The odds ratios of men skipping breakfast and having a late dinner were 1.18 and 0.92 (p<0.05), respectively. The interaction between these factors was nonsignificant. CONCLUSIONS: We suggest that skipping breakfast among men aged 20-49 years was one predictor of being overweight; however, having dinner within 2 h of bedtime was not a predictor.
Eating breakfast associated with lower BMI in children (n=604)
Irregular breakfast and an irregular meal pattern were associated with higher BMI. Regularity of school lunch, dinner or family dinner was not associated with BMI. CONCLUSIONS: A regular breakfast and meal pattern was associated with lower BMI in children, although breakfast was the only single meal associated with BMI. We conclude that, although the association between breakfast and weight status in children is fairly consistent, the role of other meals is less convincing.
Large dinners are not associated with higher BMI (meta-analysis)
In all, ten observational studies and eight clinical trials were included in the systematic review with four and five included in the meta-analyses, respectively. The meta-analysis of observational studies showed a non-significant trend between BMI and evening intake. The meta-analysis of intervention trials showed no difference in weight change between small and large dinner groups. Recommendations to reduce evening intake for weight loss cannot be substantiated by clinical evidence, and more well-controlled intervention trials are needed.