The purpose of this study was to determine whether aerobic plus resistance training (AT + RT) is more effective than aerobic training (AT) at reducing inflammatory markers and cardiovascular risk in obese adolescents. A total of 139 obese adolescents were enrolled, aged 15-19 years, body mass index (BMI) ≥ 95th percentile and participated in 1 year of interdisciplinary intervention. They were randomised into two groups: AT (n = 55), AT + RT (n = 61). Blood samples were collected to analyse glycaemia, insulin, the lipid profile, leptin and adiponectin concentrations. Insulin resistance was measured by homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance index (HOMA-IR). The AT + RT group showed better results with regard to decreased body fat mass, low-density lipoprotein concentration (LDL-c) levels, subcutaneous and visceral fat and increased body lean mass. Indeed, a reduction of hyperleptinaemia and an increase in adiponectin concentrations, promoting an improvement in the leptin/adiponectin ratio, was observed. Important clinical parameters were improved in both types of exercise; however, AT + RT was more effective in improving the visceral adiposity, metabolic profile and inflammatory markers than AT alone, suggesting clinical applications for the control of intra-abdominal obesity and cardiovascular risk in the paediatric population.
Keywords: adolescents; exercise; obesity; visceral fat.