Objectively Measured Physical Activity and Inflammatory Markers Among US Adults With Diabetes: Implications for Attenuating Disease Progression

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To examine the association between objectively measured physical activity and markers of inflammation (ie, white blood cell count, neutrophil count, and C-reactive protein level) among a national sample of adults with diabetes.

Patients and Methods:

Data from the 2003-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey cycles were used. The data were evaluated from November 25, 2012, to May 3, 2013. Participants wore an accelerometer for 4 days or longer to assess physical activity, with blood samples obtained to assess the aforementioned inflammatory markers.


Accelerometer-derived light physical activity and moderate to vigorous physical activity were inversely associated with white blood cell and neutrophil counts, whereas time spent in moderate to vigorous physical activity was inversely associated with C-reactive protein levels.


Adults with diabetes engaging in more physical activity have lower degrees of inflammation, suggesting that physical activity may reduce disease progression through mitigating inflammation, which is an important finding because increased inflammation among those with diabetes can worsen disease progression, including diabetic end-organ damage.

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