, Volume 32, Issue 5, pp 563-572
Date: 08 Nov 2013

Effects of lifestyle exercise on premenopausal bone health: a randomised controlled trial

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Abstract

Osteoporosis, a slowly evolving public health epidemic, often with an insidious presentation is largely preventable but the optimal dimensions of exercise that may be prescribed for enhancing bone-health among premenopausal adults are yet to be elucidated. Hence, the escalating incidence and burden of prevalence of osteoporosis is yet unabated. Considering that exogenous hormones in the form of hormonal contraception are known to modulate bone mass, investigations of their possible influence on the translation of exercise-induced osteogenic stimuli on the mature bone is pertinent. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of specified lifestyle exercise on bone-health of premenopausal women. Premenopausal women (n = 96, mean age: 22.25 ± 3.5 years; mean BMI: 23.43 ± 3.5 kg/m2) participated in a 6-month randomised controlled trial involving home-based rest-interspersed bouts of high-impact exercise for the intervention group and sham exercise for the control group. Approximately half (47) of the participants (24-exercise, 23-control) were on hormonal-based contraception while the other half (49: 24-exercise, 25-control) were not on hormonal contraception. The regime led to a significant 3.7 % increase in broadband ultrasound attenuation of exercisers compared to controls; hormonal contraceptive use did not appear to potentiate the osteogenic effects of the lifestyle exercise regime. The research highlights that short, discrete bouts of high-impact exercise may be a potential public health prescription for enhancing premenopausal bone-health regardless of hormonal contraceptive use.