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Food Cravings Down With Extended Calorie Restriction

In obese patients, cravings for sweet, high-fat, starchy, and fast food reduced

overweight woman

TUESDAY, June 13, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Extended calorie restriction is associated with a reduction in food cravings, according to a review and meta-analysis published online May 30 in Obesity Reviews.

Chanaka N. Kahathuduwa, from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, and colleagues conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of studies that involved subjects with obesity, implemented calorie restriction for 12 weeks or more, and measured food cravings before and after the intervention. Data were included from eight studies, which mainly used the Food Craving Inventory.

The researchers observed reductions in pooled effects for overall food cravings (−0.246) and for cravings for sweet, high-fat, starchy, and fast food in the meta-analysis (−0.41, −0.19, −0.288, and −0.34, respectively) despite heterogeneity across studies. The heterogeneity was explained by baseline body weight, type of intervention, duration, sample size, and percentage of female subjects.

"Calorie restriction is associated with reduced food cravings supporting a de-conditioning model of craving reductions," the authors write. "Our findings should ease the minds of clinicians concerned about increased cravings in patients undergoing calorie restriction interventions."

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