Journal of Obesity & Metabolic Syndrome



Online First

J Obes Metab Syndr

Published online October 27, 2020

Copyright © Korean Society for the Study of Obesity.

Optimal Diet Strategies for Weight Loss and Weight Loss Maintenance

Ju Young Kim*

Department of Family Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, Korea

Correspondence to:
Ju Young Kim
Department of Family Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, 82 Gumi-ro 173beongil, Bundang-gu, Seongnam 13620, Korea
Tel: +82-31-787-7796, Fax: +82-31-787-4014, E-mail:

Received: June 25, 2020; Reviewed : July 14, 2020; Accepted: August 19, 2020

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Obesity has become one of the most important public health problems worldwide, which suggests the need for evidence-based dietary strategies for weight loss and its maintenance. Weight management depends upon complex factors such as amount of food eaten, type of food eaten, and timing of meals. In this review, we identified evidence-based dietary strategies for weight management based on these three components. An energy deficit is the most important factor in weight loss. A low-calorie diet with a low fat or carbohydrate content has been recommended; however, in some cases, a very-low-calorie diet is required for a short period of time. Some macronutrient composition-based diets, such as the ketogenic diet or high-protein diet, could be considered in some cases, although the potential risks and long-term effectiveness remain unknown. Meal timing is also an important factor in weight management, and higher-calorie breakfasts in combination with overnight fasting may help to prevent obesity. Our review indicated that there is no single best strategy for weight management. Hence, strategies for weight loss and its maintenance should be individualized, and healthcare providers must choose the best strategy based on patient preferences.

Keywords: Carbohydrate-restricted diet, Fat-restricted diet, High-protein diet, Mediterranean diet, Fasting