An hour or less of weight training helps reduce risk of diabetes and other conditions

by Barbara Hewitt on June 22, 2017

An hour or less of resistance exercise training per week can reduce the risk of developing diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity by 29%, a new study has found.

The research, the first study of its kind, by an international team of scientists also found that more exercise is not necessarily beneficial in terms of combating the chance of developing these conditions.

(Langstrup Photography/Bigstock.com)

They say that doing more hours of resistance weight training does not reduce the risk further and a combination of both resistance and aerobic exercises was found to provide the greatest prevention benefit.

‘Few studies have reported on the health effects of resistance exercise, and this is the first such study concerning metabolic syndrome,’ said study lead author Esmée Bakker from the Radboud University Medical Centre in the Netherlands.

‘Our results indicate that a modest amount of resistance exercise, such as two 30-minute sessions per week, has the most beneficial effect. These findings should be included in the standard medical recommendations for preventing metabolic syndrome and future cardiovascular disease,’ she explained.

The study involved more than 7,000 participants from the Aerobics Centre Longitudinal Study (ACLS) in the United States. At the start of the research, all participants were healthy without metabolic syndrome and the researchers looked at the onset of the condition.

During the study some 15% of the participants developed metabolic syndrome, but those weight training for just an hour a week or less were found to have a 29% reduced risk while those who did two or more sessions per week had a 17% lower risk.

It also made little difference if people did resistance exercise only on weekends or spread throughout the week, the researchers said. The analysis did account for influence of other healthy behaviours, such as smoking and regular endurance training.

Resistance exercise was already known to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes or to improve bone health, but nothing was previously known about its link with metabolic syndrome.


The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of the DiabetesForum.com Community and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please see your doctor before making any changes to your diabetes management plan.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Ivan June 22, 2017 at 12:00 pm

Being active reduces obesity, lowers BS, and Blood pressure.

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