Objective: To determine whether interrupting prolonged sitting with brief bouts of light-intensity walking (LW) or simple resistance activities (SRA) improves postprandial cardiometabolic risk markers in adults with type 2 diabetes (T2D).
Research design and methods: In a randomized crossover trial, 24 inactive overweight/obese adults with T2D (14 men 62 ± 6 years old) underwent the following 8-h conditions on three separate days (with 6-14 days washout): uninterrupted sitting (control) (SIT), sitting plus 3-min bouts of LW (3.2 km · h(-1)) every 30 min, and sitting plus 3-min bouts of SRA (half-squats, calf raises, gluteal contractions, and knee raises) every 30 min. Standardized meals were consumed during each condition. Incremental areas under the curve (iAUCs) for glucose, insulin, C-peptide, and triglycerides were compared between conditions.
Results: Compared with SIT, both activity-break conditions significantly attenuated iAUCs for glucose (SIT mean 24.2 mmol · h · L(-1) [95% CI 20.4-28.0] vs. LW 14.8 [11.0-18.6] and SRA 14.7 [10.9-18.5]), insulin (SIT 3,293 pmol · h · L(-1) [2,887-3,700] vs. LW 2,104 [1,696-2,511] and SRA 2,066 [1,660-2,473]), and C-peptide (SIT 15,641 pmol · h · L(-1) [14,353-16,929] vs. LW 11,504 [10,209-12,799] and SRA 11,012 [9,723-12,301]) (all P < 0.001). The iAUC for triglycerides was significantly attenuated for SRA (P < 0.001) but not for LW (SIT 4.8 mmol · h · L(-1) [3.6-6.0] vs. LW 4.0 [2.8-5.1] and SRA 2.9 [1.7-4.1]).
Conclusions: Interrupting prolonged sitting with brief bouts of LW or SRA attenuates acute postprandial glucose, insulin, C-peptide, and triglyceride responses in adults with T2D. With poor adherence to structured exercise, this approach is potentially beneficial and practical.
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