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Any exercise can improve diabetes control PDF Print E-mail
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Friday, 03 November 2006 00:00
Combining resistance training, such as weight lifting, with aerobic workouts appears to be the most beneficial for type for long-term control of blood sugar control than either form of exercise alone, New Zealand researchers report. However, the outcomes according to type of exercise weren't very significant.

The effects of exercise on blood sugar were small, Drs. Neil J. Snowling and Will G. Hopkins of the Auckland University of Technology note, and were similar to those achieved with medication and diet changes. This suggests that putting all three together could have a more substantial effect.

Exercise is a mainstay of therapy for type 2 diabetes, Snowling and Hopkins note, given that physical inactivity increases diabetes risk. To determine which types of exercise might be most helpful in controlling blood sugar, they analyzed 27 studies including 1,003 patients to determine the effects of different types of exercise on hemoglobin A1C, a measure of how well a person's blood sugar is controlled long-term.

For any type of exercise training lasting 12 weeks or longer, the researchers found, hemoglobin A1C levels fell by 0.8 percent. There was some evidence that combining aerobic exercise with resistance training had more of an effect than either type of exercise alone. But more intense exercise programs did not appear to be more effective, possibly because they were more difficult for people to stick with, the researchers note.

The researchers also found that exercise had a stronger effect on people with more severe disease, which they call "a reassuring finding for those prescribing exercise to patients."

The actual cardiovascular risk reduction with exercise for diabetes patients is small, the researchers note. But "one should not include that exercise is not worth the effort," they add, as exercise, diet and medication combined can produce a "moderate or even large" risk reduction.

SOURCE: Diabetes Care, November 2006.

Source: Reuters UK
Link: http://today.reuters.co.uk/news/articlenews.aspx?type=healthNews...


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