Abstract 18913: Exercise Capacity Protects from the Ominous Effect of Weight Loss
Background: As have other studies in clinical populations, we have noted a consistent “obesity paradox” in our population of male veterans referred for exercise testing. Previously we reported that weight changes can explain this paradox and now extend our analysis to include exercise capacity.
Methods: We studied 4,019 consecutive male patients (60 ± 11 years) referred for exercise testing who had weight and height measured on two separate visits before and after the exercise test. Changes in weight were scored in even pounds per year ranging from a loss of eight or more lbs/year to a gain of eight or more lbs/year. Age adjusted Cox Hazard survival analysis was performed including baseline weight, change in weight and METs estimated from maximal treadmill test speed and grade with all-cause mortality as the outcome.
Results: There were 326 deaths over a mean follow up of 6.9 years. The mean years between weight measurements were 6.5 ± 3. Using age adjusted Cox hazard analysis METs and delta lbs/year between visits were significantly (P < 0.0001) and independently associated with time to death while the baseline weight was not. Risk decreased 16% for each MET achieved and 10% for each lb/year gained.
Conclusions: The deleterious survival consequences of weight loss can be offset by the beneficial effects of having higher exercise capacity.
- © 2010 by American Heart Association, Inc.