Background: The elderly's health issues are often complex and tend to lead to chronic diseases; such issues can be due to a fitness decline resulting from a lack of physical activities. The burdock root is a blood purifier, lymphatic system strengthener, and natural diuretic. The purpose of this study was to analyze the effects of aquarobic exercise and burdock intake on serum blood lipids and vascular elasticity in elderly women by implementing a 12-week program with these interventions.
Methods: Forty elderly female volunteer subjects aged 70 to 80years comprised the control group (n=8), aquarobic exercise group (n=11), aquarobic exercise and burdock intake combination group (n=11), and burdock intake group (n=10). The variables of serum blood lipids, and vascular elasticity were measured in all participants before and after the 12-week study.
Results: Total cholesterol (TC), triglycerides (TG), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) levels significantly decreased in the aquarobic exercise group and aquarobic exercise and burdock intake combination group (p<0.05, p<0.01, p<0.001). No statistically significant changes in pulse wave velocity were also found within or between the groups before and after participation in the 12-week program.
Conclusions: Our findings indicate that aquarobic exercise and burdock intake improved the serum blood lipid levels and vascular elasticity of Korean elderly women. Additionally, burdock extract intake may be useful in vascular health by playing a secondary role in disease prevention and health promotion.
Keywords: Aquarobic exercise; Blood lipid; Burdock intake; Elderly women; Vascular elasticity.
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