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Obes Surg. 2013 Feb;23(2):255-66. doi: 10.1007/s11695-012-0839-1.

Surgical weight loss: impact on energy expenditure.

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New York Obesity Nutrition Research Center, Department of Medicine, St. Luke's Roosevelt Hospital Center, New York, NY 10025, USA.

Erratum in

  • Obes Surg. 2013 May;23(5):734. Béatrice, Morio [corrected to Morio, Béatrice]; Yves, Boirie [corrected to Boirie, Yves].


Diet-induced weight loss is often limited in its magnitude and often of short duration, followed by weight regain. On the contrary, bariatric surgery now commonly used in the treatment of severe obesity favors large and sustained weight loss, with resolution or improvement of most obesity-associated comorbidities. The mechanisms of sustained weight loss are not well understood. Whether changes in the various components of energy expenditure favor weight maintenance after bariatric surgery is unclear. While the impact of diet-induced weight loss on energy expenditure has been widely studied and reviewed, the impact of bariatric surgery on total energy expenditure, resting energy expenditure, and diet-induced thermogenesis remains unclear. Here, we review data on energy expenditure after bariatric surgery from animal and human studies. Bariatric surgery results in decreased total energy expenditure, mainly due to reduced resting energy expenditure and explained by a decreased in both fat-free mass and fat mass. Limited data suggest increased diet-induced thermogenesis after gastric bypass, a surgery that results in gut anatomical changes and modified the digestion processes. Physical activity and sustained intakes of dietary protein may be the best strategies available to increase non-resting and then total energy expenditure, as well as to prevent the decline in lean mass and resting energy expenditure.

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