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Researchers evaluate resistance training for diabetes prevention
Date:8/25/2009

Blacksburg, Va. -- Systematic, progressive resistance training also called strength training is a safe and efficient way for middle-aged and older adults to improve their health. A Virginia Tech led research team that includes experts in behavior, exercise, physiology, and medicine is designing a program to help pre-diabetic adults begin and, most important, maintain resistance training in order to prevent diabetes.

"Much attention has been directed at aerobic exercise for weight management and health; while resistance training is encouraged to build strength and maintain lean body mass, particularly in older adults," said Richard Winett (http://www.psyc.vt.edu/people/show.php?id=rswinett), the Heilig Meyers professor of psychology in the College of Science and director of the Center for Research in Health Behavior and the clinical science program at Virginia Tech. "However lab-gym based studies have shown that resistance training has other potential benefits for prevention and treatment of heart disease, some cancers, and diabetes, and some people may find this form of exercise more appealing."

"In the case of diabetes, improved muscle function may improve insulin and glucose metabolism," said Brenda Davy (http://www.hnfe.vt.edu/about_US/Bios_faculty/bio_davy_brenda.html), associate professor of human nutrition, food, and exercise in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Virginia Tech.

"But these positive effects depend upon maintaining resistance training over the long-term," said Winett.

Davy and Winett are principal investigators on a five-year, $3.2 million National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)-funded behavioral change intervention program to help older adults begin and, most important, maintain resistance training.

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Contact: Susan Trulove
STrulove@vt.edu
540-231-5646
Virginia Tech
Source:Eurekalert  

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