Death by VLCD...


Full Member
Hey all
Sorry for the morbid title! Tonight my parents showed me a newspaper article from the Sunday Mirror (5.11.06) about a 25 year old woman called tillie who weighed 33stone and lost 10stone in 6months on lighter life. Sadly she died soon after from a heart arrhythmia - when the heart doesn't recover properly between beats.
One dr blaming her rapid weight loss on the VLCD another saying she was "a walking time bomb anyway". Neither saying they can prove it was the diet.
I'm sorry if this has been discussed b4, I just feel a bit spooked by it and wondered what everyone else thought?
Thanks xx
There is another thread on the board somewhere entitled Sunday mirror article.

To be honest I reckon it was being so heavy for so long rather than the VLCD that caused. May she RIP - her poor family

There is another thread on the board somewhere entitled Sunday mirror article.

To be honest I reckon it was being so heavy for so long rather than the VLCD that caused. May she RIP - her poor family


If you ask me my honest opinion, I would have to agree with bettyboo that it is more likely to have been implications from being heavy for so long, than a VLCD.

I'm am only into day 2 again on CD now and would have thought the same if I had read this before I started TBH guys.

It's a real tragedy though, no doubt about that.

The response to that article from a NHS Hopsital weightloss consultant I know was that he's had people die while waiting to start the VLCD his clinic uses. The heavier the person the more likely that they have serious undelying health problems. Much more likely that's what got her.... (poor thing, it's such a shame and I can understand her greiving family lashing out trying to place blame) There are too many using VLCD's safely - and it's much safer than bariatric surgery!!!!
this is the kind of advice i get from parents aswell about vlcd's and it terrifies me but so does dropping dead if i dont do it. a rock and a hard place springs to mind. poor girl.
The VLCD is THE most researched diet in the world bar none. No study has ever shown that it is a risky diet in anyway shape or form when the person isn't contrindicated and is monitored by someone along the way.

People die on Weightwatchers, Slimming World every day! People die who aren't dieting every day!

It is just easy to link the diet with death because without knowledge of how the diet works it looks like she "starved" herself to death.

Long live the VLCD and thoughts with her family.

Some information on two important studies on obesity.

Van Dam and his colleagues examined data from 102,400 female nurses in the Nurses’ Health Study II, a prospective study launched in 1989.

At that time, study participants, all aged 24 to 44, reported their current height and weight and their weight at age 18. Researchers calculated body mass index (BMI)--weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in meters.

Participants also answered questions in a number of other areas, including disease history, alcohol consumption, smoking and exercise. Follow-up questionnaires were sent to participants until July 1, 2001, or to the date of death, whichever came first.

The results showed that women with a higher BMI at 18 consumed more alcohol, smoked more and were less likely to engage in vigorous physical activity during adolescence.
During the 12-year follow-up period (1989-2001), in which 710 participants died, the HSPH researchers found that women with a higher BMI at age 18 had a higher risk of dying prematurely.

That was true for even moderately overweight adolescents. Associations between overweight and premature mortality were similar for women who were younger and older than 40 during follow-up. Major causes of death included cancer (258 deaths) and cardiovascular disease (55 deaths); of the deaths due to external causes (144 deaths), suicide was the most common cause (61 deaths).

The researchers also found that women with a low BMI at age 18 did not have an increased risk of mortality. This finding contrasts with several recent studies, in which both a low and high BMI in middle-aged and older adults was associated with excess mortality. However, at older ages, a low BMI may reflect lifelong smoking habits or weight loss as a result ofdiseases, which may bias associations between BMI and mortality.

Source: Being Overweight As a Teen Associated With Premature Death in Adulthood, press release of Thursday, October 05, 2006, Harvard School of Public Health

This article below is the biggest study that was ever done.


In 1982, 1,046,154 participants (who had to be at least 30 years old) from the US Cancer Prevention II Study completed questionnaires.

Items included demographic characteristics, personal and family history of disease, height and weight. Out of 457,785 men and 588,369 women, 113,517 men and 88,105 women died during 14 years of follow up (a total of 201,622 deaths).
Body mass index, an index of weight adjusted for height, was calculated (weight [kg] divided by height [m] squared).

The World Health Organisation classifies body mass index as: normal 18.5 to 24.9; grade 1 overweight 25.0 to 29.9; grade 2 overweight 30.0 to 39.9; and grade 3 overweight 40.0 or higher.

The association between body mass index and risk of death from all causes was examined in all participants according to smoking status and history of disease. Healthy non-smokers (84,376 men and 217,857 women) were further examined to see whether this association varied according to age, race or cause of death. (Non-smokers had never smoked).

Full article: Body Weight and Mortality