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Previous studies have reported that aerobic exercise is of major importance for Type 2 diabetes prevention, and now a new study says that lifting weights can reduce those chances even further.
In the study from the Harvard School of Public Health and the University of Southern Denmark, researchers analysed data on 32,000 Americans taking part in the Health
Professionals Follow-Up Study, which looked at lifestyle effects on
health. During the study period from 1990 to 2008, a total of 2,278 participants developed Type 2 diabetes. Business Week reports:
Men who did weight training one to 59 minutes a week reduced their diabetes risk by 12 percent, those who engaged in weight training 60 to 149 minutes a week reduced their risk by 25 percent and those who weight trained for at least 150 minutes a week lowered it by 34 percent compared with those who did no weight training, the authors said. Combining 150 minutes a week of weight training with 150 minutes of aerobic exercise reduced diabetes risk by 59 percent.
According to the researchers, the reason why weight training helps is that it lowers the body’s insulin resistance, making it easier to move blood sugar from the bloodstream into the cells. This puts less demand on the pancreas to produce insulin to maintain the lowered blood sugar levels.