Resistance Exercise Training Improves Vascular Function after Acute Exertion in Obese Women
Franklin, Nina C.
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Sedentary lifestyle is a significant health problem in the United States and a leading cause of preventable death. Low levels of physical activity promote obesity and contribute to other chronic diseases, such as hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus, and some forms of cancer. Vascular dysfunction is a key event in the development of atherosclerosis and associated with a sedentary lifestyle in otherwise healthy adults. In addition, vascular dysfunction may be exacerbated in sedentary adults who are obese since increased body fat is associated with elevated levels of pro-atherogenic inflammatory adipokines and cytokines that reduce nitric oxide bioavailability in vascular endothelial cells. A study examining the effects of single and multiple bouts of resistance exercise training on vascular function was carried out in sedentary obese young women. A total of 10 women completed the entire study. Subjects were evaluated at multiple time points before, during, and after participation in an 8-week moderate-intensity resistance exercise training intervention. At each time point subjects underwent a single bout of strenuous weight lifting designed to increase blood pressure. Vascular function was assessed before and after strenuous weight lifting using brachial artery flow-mediated dilation and blood samples were obtained for measurement of circulating adipokine and cytokine levels. Other relevant physical and physiological variables assessed included: fasting lipids and glucose, red and white blood cells, platelets, hemoglobin, and hematocrit, blood pressure, heart rate, anthropometrics, body composition, daily physical activity, functional capacity, muscular strength, and dietary patterns. Brachial artery flow-mediated dilation was impaired in sedentary obese women after a single bout of strenuous weight lifting and an 8-week moderate-intensity resistance exercise training intervention completely reversed this impairment. In addition, resistance exercise training resulted in improvements in waist circumference, body composition, functional capacity, and muscular strength. There were no significant changes in fasting lipids or glucose levels, red or white blood cells, platelets, hemoglobin, or hematocrit, blood pressure, or heart rate as a result of the resistance exercise training intervention. Changes in brachial artery flow-mediated dilation post-acute exertion and after 8 weeks of resistance exercise training were not linked to obesity-related changes in circulating adipokine and cytokine levels.