Purpose: Exercise training reduces systemic inflammation in weight-stable people, but concurrent diet-induced body weight loss is not well studied. We hypothesized that resistance training would decrease inflammatory monocyte percentage and improve biomarkers associated with disease risk, independent of weight loss.
Methods: Forty physically inactive (PI) subjects (58.0 ± 5.7 years; BMI 30.1 ± 4.3 kg m(-2)) completed baseline testing, and 26 of these subjects completed 12-week of resistance training exercises while consuming either their usual, weight-maintenance diet (RE, n = 14) or an energy-restricted diet (RE-ER, n = 12). Nine physically active (PA) subjects served as a comparison group (60.1 ± 6.1 years; BMI 25.8 ± 3.1 kg m(-2)).
Results: At baseline, circulating CD14+CD16+ monocyte percentage, C-reactive protein, and cholesterol were higher in PI vs. PA. Post-intervention, RE subjects had a ~35 % decrease in circulating CD14+CD16+, and a lower LPS-stimulated TNFα and IL-6 production, while RE-ER subjects had lower cholesterol than RE.
Conclusions: These findings indicate that resistance training is an effective means for older, overweight adults to reduce systemic inflammation. The unexpected lack of response with concurrent energy restriction underscores the need for further research on the use of resistance training and diet to reduce inflammation.