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A new study by the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) has found that weight training may be associated with a significantly lower risk of Type II Diabetes.
The study followed 32,000 males for almost two decades and found that those who lifted weights for at least 150 minutes a week, lowered their risk of developing Type II Diabetes by 34%, compared with those who did no weight training.
Researchers claim one of the main reasons why weight training is so beneficial is that it can improve the sensitivity of insulin receptors, allowing the muscle cells to absorb glucose more easily.
This is the first study to look at the effects of weight training alone. Pervious studies have only focused on aerobic training. The study also shows that those who combined weights with cardio had the greatest reduction in risk, by up to 59%.
Although limited to only men, Dr. Willett, a lead researcher, said he was “virtually sure” the results were universally applicable. Just as aerobic exercise benefits everyone, he said, weight training should as well.
Source: “A Prospective Study of Weight Training and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus in Men,” Anders Grøntved, Eric B. Rimm, Walter C. Willett, Lars B. Andersen, Frank B. Hu, Archives of Internal Medicine, August 6, 2012.