Absolute and Relative Changes in Ultra-processed Food Consumption and Dietary Antioxidants in Severely Obese Adults 3 Months After Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass



Patients that undergo Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) experience a dramatic change in food consumption; however, it is unknown whether food consumption changes in relation to the level of food processing.


The aim of this work was to evaluate the relationship between ultra-processed food intake, dietary antioxidant capacity, and cardiometabolic risk factors in patients who underwent RYGB.


This study included 58 obese patients who underwent RYGB bariatric surgery. Data collection was done pre-operatively and at 3 months post-surgery. The foods consumed were documented using a 3-day 24-h dietary recall, and food intake was classified based on NOVA and dietary total antioxidant capacity (TAC). Anthropometric and biochemical data as well as information on body composition were also collected. Metabolic syndrome (MS) was classified in accordance with the International Diabetes Federation.


Ultra-processed foods amounted to 27.2% and 19.7% of the total calories consumed during pre- and post-surgery periods, respectively. Regarding post-surgery, the caloric contribution of unprocessed or minimally processed foods increased, from 55.7 to 70.2% (p = 0.000). The TAC of foods consumed is inversely proportional to that of ultra-processed foods. Obvious changes were observed in all the anthropometric variables, lipid profile, glycemia, insulin resistance, and MS.


Our results indicate that bariatric surgery is able to promote improvement in the diet quality of patients, reducing the consumption of ultra-processed foods and increasing the intake of unprocessed foods. The TAC of foods consumed is inversely proportional to that of ultra-processed ones.

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This study was funded by the Coordination for the Improvement of Personnel at the CAPES.

Author information




Sônia Lopes Pinto: contributed in the design of the study, data collection, analysis and interpretation, manuscript writing, and final version approval

Danielle Cristina Guimarães da Silva: contributed in the analysis and interpretation of the data, critical revision of the manuscript, and approval of the final version

Josefina Bressan: contributed in the design of the study, analysis and interpretation of the data, critical revision of the manuscript, and approval of the final version

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Correspondence to Sônia Lopes Pinto.

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Lopes Pinto, S., da Silva, D.C.G. & Bressan, J. Absolute and Relative Changes in Ultra-processed Food Consumption and Dietary Antioxidants in Severely Obese Adults 3 Months After Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass. OBES SURG 29, 1810–1815 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11695-019-03749-z

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  • NOVA
  • Ultra-processed foods
  • Antioxidants
  • Bariatric surgery