Eating frequency predicts changes in regional body fat distribution in healthy adults

G. Georgiopoulos, K. Karatzi, M. Yannakoulia, E. Georgousopoulou, E. Efthimiou, A. Mareti, I. Bakogianni, A. Mitrakou, C. Papamichael, K. Stamatelopoulos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Eating frequency (EF) has been associated with generalized obesity. Aim: We aimed to prospectively investigate potential associations of frequency of eating episodes with regional fat layers. Design: EF was evaluated at baseline in 115 subjects free of clinically overt cardiovascular disease (54 6 9.1 years, 70 women) in a prospective, observational study. Methods: Metabolic parameters known to be associated with dietary factors and anthropometric markers including ultrasound assessment of subcutaneous (Smin) and pre-peritoneal (Pmax) fat and their ratio Smin/Pmax (AFI) were evaluated at baseline and at follow-up, 5 years later. Results: EF at baseline positively correlated with Pmax, even after adjustment for potential confounders. EF above median was also an independent predictor for Pmax (beta coefficient=-0.192, P = 0.037) and AFI (beta coefficient = 0.199, P = 0.049) at follow up. Multivariable linear mixed models analysis demonstrated that subjects with increased EF presented a lower progression rate of Pmax (beta=-0.452, P = 0.006) and a higher progression rate of AFI (beta = 0.563, P = 0.003) over time, independently of age, sex, progression of BMI, energy intake, smoking and changes in parameters of glucose metabolism. Conclusions: High EF is associated with lower progression rate of pre-peritoneal fat accumulation. Future interventional studies should further investigate the clinical utility of these findings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)729-734
Number of pages6
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017
Externally publishedYes


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