Background: While several studies have identified the anaerobic threshold (AT) through the responses of blood lactate, ventilation and blood glucose others have suggested the response of the heart rate variability (HRV) as a method to identify the AT in young healthy individuals. However, the validity of HRV in estimating the lactate threshold (LT) and ventilatory threshold (VT) for individuals with type 2 diabetes (T2D) has not been investigated yet.
Aim: To analyze the possibility of identifying the heart rate variability threshold (HRVT) by considering the responses of parasympathetic indicators during incremental exercise test in type 2 diabetics subjects (T2D) and non diabetics individuals (ND).
Methods: Nine T2D (55.6 ± 5.7 years, 83.4 ± 26.6 kg, 30.9 ± 5.2 kg.m2(-1)) and ten ND (50.8 ± 5.1 years, 76.2 ± 14.3 kg, 26.5 ± 3.8 kg.m2(-1)) underwent to an incremental exercise test (IT) on a cycle ergometer. Heart rate (HR), rate of perceived exertion (RPE), blood lactate and expired gas concentrations were measured at the end of each stage. HRVT was identified through the responses of root mean square successive difference between adjacent R-R intervals (RMSSD) and standard deviation of instantaneous beat-to-beat R-R interval variability (SD1) by considering the last 60 s of each incremental stage, and were known as HRVT by RMSSD and SD1 (HRVT-RMSSD and HRVT-SD1), respectively.
Results: No differences were observed within groups for the exercise intensities corresponding to LT, VT, HRVT-RMSSD and HHVT-SD1. Furthermore, a strong relationship were verified among the studied parameters both for T2D (r = 0.68 to 0.87) and ND (r = 0.91 to 0.98) and the Bland & Altman technique confirmed the agreement among them.
Conclusion: The HRVT identification by the proposed autonomic indicators (SD1 and RMSSD) were demonstrated to be valid to estimate the LT and VT for both T2D and ND.