Efficacy of a randomized trial examining commercial weight loss programs and exercise on metabolic syndrome in overweight and obese women

Claire Baetge, Conrad P. Earnest, Brittanie Lockard, Adriana M. Coletta, Elfego Galvan, Christopher Rasmussen, Kyle Levers, Sunday Y. Simbo, Y. Peter Jung, Majid Koozehchian, Jonathan Oliver, Ryan Dalton, Brittany Sanchez, Michael J. Byrd, Deepesh Khanna, Andrew Jagim, Julie Kresta, Mike Greenwood, Richard B. Kreider

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    21 Scopus citations


    While commercial dietary weight-loss programs typically advise exercise, few provide actual programing. The goal of this study was to compare the Curves Complete 90-day Challenge (CC, n = 29), which incorporates exercising and diet, to programs advocating exercise (Weight Watchers Points Plus (WW, n = 29), Jenny Craig At Home (JC, n = 27), and Nutrisystem Advance Select (NS, n = 28)) or control (n = 20) on metabolic syndrome (MetS) and weight loss. We randomized 133 sedentary, overweight women (age, 47 ± 11 years; body mass, 86 ± 14 kg; body mass index, 35 ± 6 kg/m2) into respective treatment groups for 12 weeks. Data were analyzed using chi square and general linear models adjusted for age and respective baseline measures. Data are means ± SD or mean change ± 95% confidence intervals (CIs). We observed a significant trend for a reduction in energy intake for all treatment groups and significant weight loss for all groups except control: CC (−4.32 kg; 95% CI, −5.75, −2.88), WW (−4.31 kg; 95% CI, −5.82, −2.96), JC (−5.34 kg; 95% CI, −6.86, −3.90), NS (−5.03 kg; 95% CI, −6.49, −3.56), and control (0.16 kg, 95% CI, −1.56, 1.89). Reduced MetS prevalence was observed at follow-up for CC (35% vs. 14%, adjusted standardized residuals (adjres.) = 3.1), but notWW(31% vs. 28% adjres. = 0.5), JC (37% vs. 42%, adjres. = −0.7), NS (39% vs. 50% adjres. = −1.5), or control (45% vs. 55% adjres. = −1.7). While all groups improved relative fitness (mL·kg−1·min−1) because of weight loss, only the CC group improved absolute fitness (L/min). In conclusion, commercial programs offering concurrent diet and exercise programming appear to offer greater improvements in MetS prevalence and cardiovascular function after 12 weeks of intervention.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)216-227
    Number of pages12
    JournalApplied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism
    Issue number2
    StatePublished - 2017


    • Diet
    • Exercise
    • Metabolic syndrome

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
    • Physiology
    • Nutrition and Dietetics
    • Physiology (medical)


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