Associations of Strength Training with Impaired Glucose Metabolism: The AusDiab Study

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Abstract

Purpose

To examine the association of strength training (ST) activity with impaired glucose metabolism (IGM) in Australian adults.

Methods

On the basis of an oral glucose tolerance test, IGM (which includes impaired fasting glucose, impaired glucose tolerance, or newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes), was assessed in 5831 adults (mean age = 56.0 ± 12.7 yr) without clinically diagnosed diabetes who participated in the 2004–2005 Australian Diabetes, Obesity and Lifestyle Study (AusDiab). Meeting the current ST guideline was based on reporting ST at least two times per week (frequency) or ≥40 min·wk−1 in total (duration). Multiple logistic regression analyses examined associations of self-reported ST frequency and duration with IGM.

Results

After adjustment for known confounding factors and total moderate- to vigorous-intensity leisure time exercise, the odds ratio (OR) of IGM was 0.73 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.59–0.91, P ≤ 0.005) in those who met the ST frequency guideline (two or more times per week) and 0.69 (95% CI = 0.55–0.87, P ≤ 0.01) in those who met the ST duration guideline (≥40 min·wk−1). Those who achieved both the recommended frequency and duration of ST had 24% lower odds of IGM. There was also evidence that a moderate frequency (once a week) and duration (10–39 min·wk−1) of ST reduced the odds of IGM (OR frequency = 0.53, 95% CI = 0.51–0.81, P ≤ 0.01; OR duration = 0.72, 95% CI = 0.52–1.00, P ≤ 0.05).

Conclusions

These findings support the importance of including ST activity, at a frequency of at least once per week, within exercise management recommendations for the maintenance of favorable metabolic health, particularly as it may contribute to reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes mellitus.

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