Could Muscle Strength Lower Risk Of Diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is a metabolic condition in which the body cannot properly regulate blood sugar levels and it is a condition that many people have worldwide.

A recent study looked into the value of the effects of exercise and the type of exercise on type 2 diabetes .

The study was done by several institutions from Iowa State University in Ames, IA, the University of South Carolina in Columbia, SC, the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, LA, and the Ochsner Clinical School at the University of Queensland School of Medicine in Brisbane, Australia.

The study reveled that those people with moderate muscle strength who maintained it through resistance exercise and training showed to be at a considerably lower risk if type 2 diabetes.The study did not consider other factors for instance such as cardiorespiratoryfitness. 

Researchers also pointed out that increasing muscle mass did not have an effect of further lowering type 2 diabetes – that moderate muscle mass was enough.

Also the study showed that even moderate resistance training was enough to be beneficial to lower type 2 diabetes but the study was not conclusive as to establishing how much exercise was enough because it could vary depending on different health outcomes and population, said associate professor Duck-chul Lee, from Iowa State University.

However, the study which included data from 4,681 adults ranging in age from 20-100 years and who did not as a baseline have diabetes. For the researchers to measure individual muscle strength all of the participants agreed to do chest and leg presses. The exercises were adjusted to accommodate an individual’s age, biological sex, and body weight and each participant went through a physical exam before the study and at follow-up at the end of the study.

The results were that 32 percent of individuals with moderate muscle mass showed a lower risk of becoming type 2 diabetes.  This effect was registered without regard to whether an individual was a frequent drinker, smoked, was obese or had high blood pressure which are all risk factors for diabetes.  Only moderate muscle strength was measured.

The data collected suggests that there is a moderate association between a persons’s muscle strength and the frequency in which they participated in resistance exercise in preventing them from becoming a risk for type 2 diabetes.

Researchers also concluded that resistance training may not make a difference in your weight loss or gain but the benefit of lowering your risk for type 2 diabetes and maintaining muscle mass helps people to stay functional, independent and healthy throughout their lifetime.

Study co-author Angelique Brellenthin, says that small amounts of resistance training does not have to be complicated. Doing squats, planks or even lunges could be a good beginning and then after one’s strength builds, free weights or weight machines can be added.