Beat Teen Diabetes With Exercise
August 10, 2006
A new study found that teens who are at risk of developing diabetes can delay or even prevent its occurrence by performing strength-training exercise.
The study focused on Latino teens, who are statistically at particular risk for diabetes, with roughly 50 percent of all Latino children born in 2000 expected to develop type 2 diabetes.
Reduced Insulin Resistance
Twenty-two teenaged Latino boys lifted weights twice a week for four months under the guidance of personal trainers. As would be expected, their body fat percentage decreased and their lean muscle mass increased, but 91 percent also significantly reduced their insulin resistance.
Insulin resistance, which prevents the body from processing sugar properly, is common among overweight children and is a warning sign for diabetes. Previous studies have demonstrated the benefits of this kind of exercise for insulin-resistant adults, but no earlier studies have looked at overweight teens.
Easier Than Aerobics
Teens may be more likely to stick with a weight-training regimen, as opposed to aerobic exercise, because it yields quick results for less work.