Is Yo-Yo Dieting Risky For Heart Patients?

“Yo-yo dieting” — where people lose weight and gain it back again — doubles the risk of a heart attack, stroke or death in people who already have significant heart disease. That’s the conclusion of an international study published recently in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Researchers reviewed weight data gathered over several years from 9,509 people with significant heart disease who had taken part in a trial of a cholesterol-lowering statin drug. The study was sponsored by the drugmaker Pfizer.

“Our findings suggest that we need to be concerned about weight fluctuation in this group that is already at high risk due to coronary disease,” says lead researcher Dr. Sripal Bangalore, a cardiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City.

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