Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Effect of Weight Loss by Low-Calorie Diet on Cardiovascular Health in Type 2 Diabetes: An Interventional Cohort Study

Lookup NU author(s): Shaden Melhem, Dr Sarah Steven, Professor Roy Taylor, Dr Ahmad Al-Mrabeh



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains a major problem for people with type 2 diabetes (T2DM), and the leading cause of death worldwide. We aimed to determine cardiovascular benefits of weight loss with or without remission of diabetes, and to assess utility of plasma biomarkers. 29 people with T2DM were studied at baseline and after dietary weight loss. Change in plasma adipokines and lipid related markers was examined in relation to weight loss, diabetes remission, 10-year cardiovascular risk (QRISK), and duration of diabetes. QRISK decreased markedly after weight loss (18.9 ± 2.2 to 11.2 ± 1.6%, p < 0.0001) in both responders and non-responders, but non-responders remained at higher risk (15.0 ± 2.0 vs. 5.8 ± 1.6%, p < 0.0001). At baseline, plasma GDF-15 was higher in longer diabetes duration (1.19 ± 0.14 vs. 0.82 ± 0.09 ng/mL, p = 0.034), as was the QRISK (22.8 ± 2.6 vs. 15.3 ± 3.4%, p = 0.031). Leptin, GDF-15 and FGF-21 decreased whereases adiponectin increased after weight loss in responders and non-responders. However, the level of FGF-21 remained higher in non-responders (0.58 [0.28–0.71] vs. 0.25 [0.15–0.42] ng/mL, p = 0.007). QRISK change correlated with change in plasma VLDL1-TG (r = 0.489, p = 0.007). There was a positive correlation between rise in HDL cholesterol and the decrease in leptin (r = 0.57, p = 0.001), or rise in adiponectin (r = 0.58, p = 0.001) levels. In conclusion, weight loss markedly decreases cardiometabolic risk particularly when remission of diabetes is achieved. Leptin, adiponectin, GDF-15 and FGF-21 changes were related to weight loss not remission of diabetes. Normalization of 10-year cardiovascular risk and heart age is possible after substantial dietary weight loss and remission of T2DM.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Melhem S, Steven S, Taylor R, Al-Mrabeh A

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Nutrients

Year: 2021

Volume: 13

Issue: 5

Online publication date: 26/04/2021

Acceptance date: 22/04/2021

Date deposited: 12/05/2021

ISSN (electronic): 2072-6643

Publisher: MDPI


DOI: 10.3390/nu13051465


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric