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Weightlifting reduces diabetes risk

14 August 2012 11:08

Weightlifting can help men reduce the risk of diabetes

Weightlifting can help men reduce the risk of diabetes

Men can reduce the risk of diabetes by more than a third by lifting weights, according to a new study.

The Health Professionals Follow-Up Study, which looked at lifestyle effects on the health of 32,000 Americans, found regular weight training cut the chances of developing the most common form of the disease by up to 34%.

Men who also took part on aerobic exercise could reduce the risk even more.

The study ran from 1990 until 2008 and during that time 2,278 participants developed Type 2 diabetes.

Men who pumped iron for up to an hour a week reduced the risk of diabetes by 12%, those who lifted weights for more than an hour, but less than 150 minutes each week saw a 25% reduction and those who did more than 150 minutes of weight training each week saw their risk reduced by 34%.

Those participants who took part in more than 150 minutes of aerobics as well as at least 150 minutes of weight training per week saw their risk of diabetes cut by 59%.

Lead scientist Anders Grontved from the University of Southern Denmark, who is seconded to Harvard University in the US, said: "Until now, previous studies have reported that aerobic exercise is of major importance for Type 2 diabetes prevention. But many people have difficulty engaging in or adhering to aerobic exercise. These new results suggest that weight training, to a large extent, can serve as an alternative to aerobic exercise for Type 2 diabetes prevention."

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