MONDAY, April 1, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Liquid meal replacements in weight loss diets lead to modest reductions in cardiometabolic risk factors for overweight and obese patients with type 2 diabetes, according to a review published online March 28 in Diabetes Care.

Jarvis C. Noronha, from St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto, and colleagues conducted a systematic literature review of randomized trials of two weeks or longer assessing the effect of liquid meal replacements versus traditional weight loss diets on cardiometabolic risk factors in overweight/obese patients with type 2 diabetes. The authors included nine studies with 961 patients.

The researchers found mean differences for body weight −2.37 kg, body mass index −0.87 kg/m², body fat −1.66 percent, waist circumference −2.24 cm, hemoglobin A1c −0.43 percent, fasting glucose −0.63 mmol/L, fasting insulin −11.83 pmol/L, systolic blood pressure −4.97 mm Hg, and diastolic blood pressure −1.98 mm Hg. No effect was seen for meal replacement on blood lipids. Because of imprecision and/or inconsistency, the overall certainty of the evidence was low to moderate.

“More high-quality randomized controlled trials investigating the effect of liquid meal replacements as part of a weight loss diet on cardiometabolic risk factors are needed to address the uncertainties and assess whether there are differences among different types of liquid meal replacements,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the food and pharmaceutical industries.

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