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Resistance Exercise Benefits Elderly Overweight Men

Researchers analyze energy costs and blood chemistry to pinpoint metabolic effects of exercise

MONDAY, Dec. 21 (HealthDay News) -- A regimen of resistance exercise two or three times a week appears to be an effective approach to weight management and metabolic control in elderly overweight men, according to a study in the December issue of Diabetes Care.

Ioannis G. Fatouros, Ph.D., of the Democritus University of Thrace in Komotini, Greece, and colleagues randomized 40 inactive, overweight men (aged 65 to 82 years) to one of the following four exercise groups: low-intensity resistance, moderate-intensity resistance, high-intensity resistance, and a control group. The researchers assessed exercise energy cost, resting energy expenditure and blood chemistry at baseline, immediately after exercise, and during a 72-hour recovery period.

The authors note that lactate, glucose, non-esterified fatty acids, and glycerol concentrations increased with exercise and returned to baseline afterwards. Resting energy expenditure increased in all groups at 12 hours and returned to baseline after 48 hours in the moderate-intensity and low-intensity groups and 72 hours in the high-intensity group. In all exercise groups, cortisol peaked with exercise and remained elevated for 12 hours. In the high-intensity group, adiponectin concentration increased after 12 hours and remained elevated for 24 hours.

"These findings indicate that overweight older men may benefit from training with a frequency of two to three resistance exercise sessions per week. In addition, it appears that all resistance exercise schemes induce marked energy expenditure," Fatouros and colleagues conclude.

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