According to a long clinical experiment, losing a modest amount of weight does not seem to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke in people who are suffering from diabetes and already receiving adequate medical care.
It is known that modest weight loss can help overweight diabetics move, sleep, and feel better, but the benefit that it may provide in the prevention of heart disease is so small that it cannot be measured.
The study commenced in 2001, and it involved a total of 5,145 people who had Type-2 diabetes. The average age of the volunteers was 58. About 60% of them were women and over one-third were minorities.
The subjects were divided into two groups, namely, the intensive and less-intensive dietary counseling groups. People who were in the first group were given meal substitutes, such as the Slimfast drink, and encouraged to exercise more, while those in the second group underwent a less intensive diet and exercise regimes. Over the course of the study, the subjects who received intensive counseling maintained an average reduction of 5% from their initial weight. Those who were in the less-intensive program, on the other hand, lost an average of 1% of their weight. However, no difference in heart attack or stroke rate was noted between the two groups.
According to the leader of the experiment, Rena R. Wing, a researcher from the Miriam Hospital at Brown University, the researchers thought that weight control would benefit people who are suffering from diabetes in many ways. Due to the discouraging results, the patients who underwent intensive weight loss were probably disappointed, because they worked very hard to control their weight.