CPAP May Improve Calorie Restriction Weight Loss in Adults With Obesity, OSA

Elderly man sitting at home on his bed. He is wearing a medical breathing apparatus over his face attached to a machine beside him.
In obese patients with OSA, higher weight reduction was achieved in those who participated in a calorie restricted weight loss program and who received CPAP treatment.

Obese patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) had greater weight reduction with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment and participation in a calorie restriction weight loss program, according to a study presented at ENDO 2019 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Weight loss with a restricted calorie diet is first-line treatment for obesity. However, OSA is a common comorbidity of obesity and can lead to complications in weight loss treatments. CPAP treatment is highly recommended for treatment of OSA and is also recommended as an adjunctive therapy for weight loss.

A retrospective study was conducted at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences weight loss clinic in patients receiving treatment from January 2014 to August 2017. Patients who were age 18 to 65 years, had a body mass index of ≥30 and <50, and who underwent a 16-week intensive calorie restriction were eligible. The 16-week program included exercise programs, individual and cognitive behavioral therapy, and a calorie-restricted diet of 800 Kcal/day. Of the 300 participants included in the study, 236 (78.7%) were female, and the average age was 55 ± 10 years.

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Based on self-reported OSA symptoms and CPAP use, the participants were divided into 3 groups: the asymptomatic OSA group (OSA-A, n = 89), the symptomatic group (OSA-S, n=164), and the CPAP treatment group (n = 47). Results after 16 weeks showed that the absolute weight loss was significantly higher in the CPAP treatment group compared with the other 2 groups, OSA-A and OSA-S (-12.1 ± 5.9 kg vs -9.5 ± 5.5 kg vs -8.7 ± 5.3 kg, respectively; P < .01). However, percentage weight loss of the CPAP treatment group showed no significant difference compared with the asymptomatic and symptomatic OSA groups (-10.46 ± 5.63% vs -9.14 ± 4.89% vs -8.47 ± 4.97%; P =.065). A correlation of CPAP treatment to absolute weight loss treatment was established after adjustments for body mass index, age, and gender.

Overall, more weight loss was achieved in participants who underwent treatment with CPAP. “CPAP treatment can enhance sleep quality, and some research shows that good sleep quality may improve weight control,” the authors wrote.

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Mao Y, Goulden PA. The impact of CPAP on intensive calorie restriction weight loss. Presented at: ENDO 2019; March 23-26, 2019; New Orleans, LA. Abstract SAT-095.