Introduction Blood lipids and elevated blood pressure are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD).1 Although several studies have shown that exercise training improves the risk factors for CVD,2 little is known about the effect of daily physical activity on the risk factors for CVD in older adults. This study aimed to examine the effects of increased daily physical activity during an 8-week intervention period on the levels of blood lipids and blood pressure in older adults.
Methods In total, 24 postmenopausal women (age, 70.6 ± 0.7 years; height, 152.4 ± 0.9 cm) were assigned to control (C, n = 12) or physical activity (PA, n = 12) groups. Participants in the PA group were asked to increase their physical activities to more than their usual lifestyle levels for 8 weeks, while those in the control group were asked to maintain their usual lifestyle during the same period. The systolic and diastolic blood pressure of the participants was measured at the baseline and at the end of the intervention. All participants were asked to wear a triaxial accelerometer during the study. Blood samples were taken at the start (baseline) and end of the sessions.
Results At the end of the 8-week intervention period, the step counts of the participants in the PA group had increased from 5972 ± 768 steps/day (at the baseline) to 8302 ± 1011 steps/day (P < 0.001). However, no change was observed in moderate to vigorous physical activity after intervention in either group. In addition, blood lipids (triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol) and blood pressure did not differ between or within the groups at the baseline and at the end of the intervention.
Conclusion These findings indicate that promotion of daily physical activity in older adults is not sufficient to improve their blood lipids and blood pressure.
Acknowledgment This work was supported by JSPS KAKENHI Grant Number 15K21434, Meiji Yasuda Life Foundation of Health and Welfare and a Grant-in-Aid from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Fellows (2015).
Mehta AK, Doshi RS, Chaudhry ZW, Jacobs DK, Vakil RM, Lee CJ, Bleich SN, Clark JM, Gudzune KA. Benefits of commercial weight-loss programs on blood pressure and lipids: a systematic review. Prev Med 2016 Sep;90:86–99.
Fahlman MM1, Boardley D, Lambert CP, Flynn MG. Effects of endurance training and resistance training on plasma lipoprotein profiles in elderly women. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci 2002 Feb;57(2):B54–60
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