Yo-yo Dieting

It’s the start of a new year, which is a typical time for many women to adopt fad diets — only to gain the weight back almost immediately. This behavior now comes with a validated warning.

Recent medical research has upheld the belief that “yo-yo” dieting, losing weight then gaining it back again, can be harmful for older women’s hearts.

“Women with a normal weight who experience yo-yo dieting throughout their adult life are at an increased risk of sudden cardiac death and coronary heart disease death,” said study leader Dr. Somwail Rasla, an internal medicine resident at Memorial Hospital of Rhode Island in Pawtucket.

Experts have long known that being overweight at midlife is linked with a higher risk of death from heart disease. This extra weight can also boost the chances for sudden cardiac death. Rasla found that sudden cardiac death was approximately 3.5 times higher and the risk for death linked to coronary heart disease was 66% higher for those that habitually gain then lose weight.
Women who began the study at healthy weights, then repeatedly gained and lost weight over the years had the strongest risk of death from coronary heart disease or sudden cardiac death, the researchers found.

Adopting a sensible, nutritional lifestyle can improve your overall health as well as reducing your risk for heart disease and sudden cardiac death. We can help you get on this healthy path. Speak to your doctor about your specific nutritional requirements and appropriate medical recommendations to preserve your health and your heart.