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Increased resting energy expenditure and malnutrition are frequently observed in patients with COPD. The aim of this study was to examine the possible contribution of an increased diet-induced thermogenesis (DIT) to weight loss. Eleven patients with COPD in stable clinical state and 11 healthy control subjects were studied. Resting energy expenditure (REE) was measured by standard methods of indirect calorimetry, using a ventilated canopy. Premeal REE was measured after an overnight fast. All subjects then received a balanced liquid test meal with a caloric content that was 0.3 times their REE extrapolated to 24 h. Diet-induced thermogenesis was measured over 130 min. Premeal REE was 109.9 ± 11.7% of predicted values in the COPD group and 97.5 ± 9.6% of predicted in the control group (p < 0.01). Seventy minutes after the test meal, REE had increased by 18.8 ± 8.5% in the COPD group and by 15.1 ± 5.8% in the control group (NS). After 130 min, REE had increased by 16.4 ± 7.1% in the COPD group and by 12.4 ± 5.3% in the control group (NS). The DIT expressed as a percentage of the caloric content of the meal was 4.3 ± 1.6% in the COPD group and 3.3 ± 1.4% in the control group (NS). We conclude that patients with stable COPD, although hypermetabolic at rest, do not show an increased DIT.