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Female pattern fat distribution

  1. Aug 30, 2004 #1
    I am trying to find some articles or studies relating fat distribution in females to estrogen and/or A2 fat receptors.

    I was debating with a nutritionist about the fact that people loose weight when dieting relatively evenly, which I agreed for the most part.

    But, I said that in females there is a possibility that loosing weight in the lower areas could be a bit slower due to the typical female fat distribution due estrogen or the A2 fat receptors.

    Basically, what is was saying that the reason some women are disproportionately large in the butt, is due to "yoyo" dieting. I happens like this: A female diets, she looses muscle and fat but not so much in the butt. Then she stops dieting, she then gains fat first on the butt and then in other places, but never regains the muscle. You can see after several attempts at dieting why the disproportion would occurr.

    Any ideas, or more importantly any studies. I have found a few that speak of estrogen and fat distribution, but none in the context of dieting.

  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 30, 2004 #2


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    Nautica, I'm not sure of any articles specifically discussing dieting, but I agree with you about the fat distribution part. However, most of what I can find deals specifically with visceral fat, not butt fat.

    I don't know if you'll find the following review helpful. All the way down near the bottom of the abstract, it says there are insufficient data regarding waist-hip ratio, which I assume would be a measure of butt fat. So, I think your nutritionist friend is making up her own theories without any scientific backing. That always frustrates me about nutritionists, they seem to start out with a good scientific foundation in their studies, and then start forming their own pet theories that have no foundation in science at all and promote these as absolute truths to their clients.

    Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2000;(2):CD001018.
    Oestrogen and progestogen hormone replacement therapy for peri-menopausal and post-menopausal women: weight and body fat distribution.

    Norman RJ, Flight IH, Rees MC.

    University Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Adelaide, The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Woodville Road, Woodville, South Australia 5011, Australia, 5014. rnorman@medicine.adelaide.edu au.

    BACKGROUND: Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is commonly prescribed to treat menopausal symptoms and to prevent post-menopausal bone loss. However, many women are concerned about hormonal replacement therapy because they believe that such treatment will result in weight gain. The effect of HRT on weight and body fat distribution has not yet been examined in systematic reviews. It is an important topic since many women decline oestrogen therapy due to their concerns about resultant weight gain, and thus forego its potential therapeutic benefits. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the effect of unopposed oestrogen or combined oestrogen and progestogen hormone replacement therapy (HRT) upon the weight and body fat distribution of perimenopausal and postmenopausal women. SEARCH STRATEGY: The search strategy of the Menstrual Disorders and Subfertility Group was used for the identification of randomised controlled trials (RCTs). Computerised searches of MEDLINE, EMBASE, Current Contents, Biological Abstracts and CINAHL were performed. Attempts were made to identify trials from citation lists of review articles and relevant papers already obtained. In most cases, first authors of each eligible trial were contacted for additional information. All those trials that had been located as at August 1998 were examined for eligibility. SELECTION CRITERIA: All randomised, placebo or no treatment controlled trials that detailed the effect of HRT on weight or body fat distribution, including studies where HRT was combined with other therapy such as diet, supplements or exercise. Studies were eligible for consideration even though the main focus of the trial may have been on another aspect of HRT. Previous HRT use should have ceased at least one month (in the case of patches, cream or gel) or three months (for oral preparations or subcutaneous pellets) before commencement of the study. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Twenty two RCTs were identified that fulfilled the inclusion criteria for this review. The results of one trial were not available in a form that allowed it to be included in the meta-analysis; however, it has been included in the text of the review for discussion. Twenty four RCTs are awaiting assessment pending additional information from first authors. Two reviewers extracted the data independently, and the weighted mean differences for continuous outcomes were estimated from the data. Results for unopposed oestrogen and combined oestrogen were analysed separately, and the effect of each treatment regimen on body weight, BMI, waist-hip ratio, fat mass and skinfold measurement was examined where available. The effect of differing dosage levels on these parameters was also examined. MAIN RESULTS: Outcomes were evaluated separately for unopposed oestrogen and oestrogen/progestogen regimens. Statistical analysis was performed using the weighted mean difference for continuous outcomes as recommended by the Cochrane Menstrual Disorders and Subfertility Group. No statistically significant difference was found in mean weight gain between those using unopposed oestrogen and non-HRT users (0.66 kg, 95% CI -0.62, 1.93). No significant difference was found in mean weight gain between those using oestrogen/progestogen therapy and non-HRT users (-0.47 kg, 95% CI -1.63, 0.69). Insufficient data exist to enable meta-analysis of the effect of unopposed oestrogen on BMI. The reviewers found no statistically significant difference in mean BMI increase between those using oestrogen/progestogen and non-HRT users (-0.50, 95% CI -1.06, 0.06). Insufficient data exist to enable meta-analysis of the effect of HRT on waist-hip ratio, fat mass or skinfold thickness. REVIEWER'S CONCLUSIONS: There is evidence of no effect of unopposed oestrogen or combined oestrogen on body weight, indicating that these regimens do not cause extra weight gain in addition to that normally gained at menopause. (ABSTRACT TRUNCATED)

    Publication Types:

    Review, Academic

    PMID: 10796730 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
  4. Aug 30, 2004 #3

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