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Nutrigenetic-Based Diet Doesn't Increase Weight Loss

But, genetic features identify patients likely to benefit from a balanced diet strategy

MONDAY, Oct. 5, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A nutrigenetic-based diet does not increase weight loss, compared with a standard balanced diet, according to a study published in the September issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

Karen A. Frankwich, M.D., from the University of California, San Diego, and colleagues prospectively studied 51 obese or overweight U.S. veterans on an established weight management program (the MOVE! program). Participants were randomly assigned to a nutrigenetic-guided diet (balanced, low-carbohydrate, low-fat, or Mediterranean; 30 patients; based on results from the Pathway FIT test) or a standard balanced diet (21 patients).

The researchers observed no significant difference between the groups in the percentage of participants who lost 5 percent of their body weight at eight weeks (35.0 percent on the balanced diet and 26.9 percent on the nutrigenetic-guided diet). Adherence to the diets was challenging in both groups. However, for the nutrigenetic-guided diet, adherence correlated with weight loss; this was not the case for the standard therapy group. At eight weeks, the most weight was lost by participants who had low-risk polymorphisms for obesity (5.0 percent, versus 2.9 percent among all other participants; P = 0.02). They also had significantly greater reductions in body mass index (6.4 versus 3.6 percent; P = 0.03) and waist circumference (6.5 versus 2.6 percent; P = 0.02) at 24 weeks.

"Genetic features can identify individuals most likely to benefit from a balanced diet weight loss strategy," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to Pathway Genomics, which funded the study.

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