Characterization of lipid profile by nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H NMR) of metabolically healthy obese women after weight loss with Mediterranean diet and physical exercise

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Obesity is associated with an atherogenic lipid profile. No data exists on lipoprotein particle profiles in metabolically healthy obese (MHO) individuals. Our aim is to characterize lipoprotein size, particle, and subclass concentrations in MHO women after 3 months of weight loss through dietary restriction and physical exercise.

A total of 115 nondiabetic women (aged 35–55 years) with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 to 40 kg/m2 and ≤1 of the following criteria: blood pressure ≤135/85 mm Hg, fasting plasma glucose ≤100 mg/dL, HDL-cholesterol ≤50 mg/dL, and triglycerides ≤150 mg/dL were included. After 3 months of intensive lifestyle modification (Mediterranean diet and physical exercise), they were classified according to their weight loss: <5%, ≥5% to <10%, and ≥10%. Lipoprotein size, particle, and subclass concentrations were measured using 1H NMR.

The final sample, after dropouts, comprised 104 women (age: 44.4 ± 3.7 years, BMI: 36.3 ± 4.7 kg/m2), of whom 47 (45.2%), 27 (26%), and 30 (28.8%) lost <5%, ≥5% to <10%, and ≥10% of baseline body weight, respectively. All participants experienced significant weight loss and decreases in BMI. The lipid profiles showed an increase in small, medium, and large very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) particles in all groups of study with the exception of small VLDL particles in women with ≥10% of weight loss, in which it decreased. The number of VLDL particles decreased in women who had ≥10% weight loss. On the other hand, we detected a decrease in all low density lipoprotein (cLDL) and high density lipoprotein (cHDL) concentrations.

These results indicate that intensive lifestyle modification alters lipid profiles. In particular, it decreases small LDL and HDL particle numbers and does not increase medium or large HDL particles numbers.

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