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Nutrición Hospitalaria

On-line version ISSN 1699-5198Print version ISSN 0212-1611


YILDIRAN, Hilal  and  MEHMET-MERCANLIGIL, Seyit. Does increasing meal frequency improve weight loss and some biochemical parameters in overweight/obese females?. Nutr. Hosp. [online]. 2019, vol.36, n.1, pp.66-72.  Epub Apr 26, 2021. ISSN 1699-5198.


despite the positive effects of frequent meals on obesity treatment, there have been no definite conclusions on the matter.


the aim of this study is to determine the effects of different meal frequencies on weight loss, body composition and some biochemical parameters of overweight or obese females.


sixty-five adult overweight or obese females were recruited from the Endocrine Department of Ankara Gülhane Education and Research Hospital. Individualistic weight-loss diet programs were implemented (three meals/day for one group and six meals/day for the other group) with a three-month follow-up. Anthropometric measurements and 24-hour dietary records were taken for each week during the study period. Some biochemical parameters (lipid profile, fasting blood glucose, fasting insulin) were analyzed at the beginning and at the end of the study.


forty-three participants finished the study period. Body weight, body mass index, fat mass (kg), fat mass percentage (%), and waist circumference (cm) decreased significantly in both groups (p < 0.05), while fat free mass (kg) and body water (l) did not change significantly (p > 0.05). Only serum fasting insulin levels decreased significantly in the six meals/day group (p < 0.05). Whatever the differences between the initial and final values of body weight, body composition, and biochemical parameters, they were similar between the groups (p > 0.05). Only the decrease in fasting insulin levels in the six-meal group was found higher than that of the three-meal group.


in conclusion, body weight, body composition, and lipid profiling are not affected by the number of meals when weight-loss diets are prepared with adequate energy restrictions and sufficient and balanced nutrition.

Keywords : Obesity; Food frequency; Body weight; Fat mass; Serum cholesterol; Insulin.

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