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Metformin may help maintain weight loss over long term, finds clinical trial

Metformin may help maintain weight loss over long term, finds clinical trial

Good news-Metformin may help maintain weight loss over long-term, finds clinical trial.

Metformin is a cost-effective and safe antidiabetic agent which is at present widely used in prediabetes as well. It is used with a proper diet and exercise program and possibly with other medications to control high blood sugar.

All those who are keen to lose medicines with a lot of determination at their command with diet restriction and exercise do manage to lose weight. In certain cases, the help of anti-obesity drugs is also sought. But unfortunately, most of these weight loss enthusiasts return back to their original weight once the sanctions of lifestyle modifications are lifted. Now all such individuals have hope -There is a drug which will help them maintain their weight loss for 6 to 15 years.

In the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) clinical trial and its long-term follow-up study, among the persons who lost at least 5 per cent of their body weight during the first year, long-term maintenance of weight loss was more likely if they had been assigned to treatment with metformin than with placebo or lifestyle intervention. Being older and losing a greater amount of weight in the first year were the most consistent predictors of lasting weight loss. Findings from a cohort study are published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Weight loss plays a central role in efforts to prevent or delay type 2 diabetes. As such, identifying good predictors of long-term weight loss could lead to improved weight management. The DPP was a randomized controlled trial that compared weight loss and diabetes prevention with metformin, intensive lifestyle intervention (ILS), or placebo among more than 3,000 participants with prediabetes, and its Outcomes Study (DPPOS) observed patients after the masked treatment phase ended. The DPP/DPPOS is the largest and longest-running study of metformin for the prevention of diabetes.

After the first year, twice as many participants in the ILS group versus the metformin group lost at least 5 per cent of their body weight. However, those who were assigned to the metformin group had greater success at maintaining their weight loss between years 6 and 15, while patients were still being followed. The researchers noted that greater weight loss at one year predicted long-term weight loss across all groups. Early weight loss was also important with regard to diabetes incidence. The researchers found that cumulative diabetes incidence rates over 15 years were lower among those who lost at least 5 per cent of their weight in the first year.

Please also read-Medical treatment of obesity : All you need to know

According to the study authors, future research should focus on whether metformin could be a useful intervention for weight loss maintenance after initial weight loss with lifestyle interventions, antiobesity drugs or devices, or bariatric surgery.

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Source: With inputs from Annals of Internal Medicine

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