Study: A 3 kg weight loss may increase mortality among the elderly

Elderly people in Norway care for the elderlyElderly. Photo:

A weight loss of just 3 kilograms can increase mortality among the elderly, according to a new study.

PhD Fellowship student Teresa Risan Haugsgjerd and Professor Grethe Seppola Tell of the Institute of Global Health and Community Medicine have examined the relationship between weight change and mortality in persons between the ages of 71-74, writes the newspaper Bergens Tidende.

– A weight loss only needs to be 3 kilograms to increase mortality. The elderly and their families should be more aware of even the slightest weight change, says Haugsgjerd.

The startling findings were discovered among 2,935 persons who live in Hordaland and the study was recently published in the renowned American journal “The Journal of Nutrition, Health and Aging.”

– This is surprising. Weight loss is probably a indicator for something else that is increasing mortality, says Tell.

They can’t exclude the fact that it might be a result of illness, but persons with serious diseases were excluded from the study. Mortality was not increased in the group that had a BMI over 30.

– However, amongst the underweight, normal weight and overweight, the risk of death increased. At the same time, a weight gain of 12 kilograms or more increased the risk of mortality, explains Haugsgjerd.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today