, Volume 20, Issue 2, pp 134–138 | Cite as

Daily physical activity, work capacity and glucose tolerance in lean and obese normoglycaemic middle-aged men

  • F. Lindgärde
  • B. Saltin


Daily physical activity, work capacity, relative body weight and glucose tolerance were studied in 115 normoglycaemic 48 year old men selected from a health screening programme. In contrast to the reported physical activity at work, leisure time activity was significantly related to maximal oxygen uptake (p < 0.05), glucose (p < 0.05) and insulin values (p < 0.05) during OGTT, but not to relative body weight. The number of men with impaired glucose tolerance (glucose at 120 min > 6.9mmol) was significantly higher among those who were physically inactive during their leisure time. The insulin glucose ratio at 0 and 120 min during the OGTT was significantly higher in the obese unfit as compared to the obese fit subjects thus suggesting an influence of moderate leisure time physical activity on glucose tolerance.

Key words

Middle-aged men glucose tolerance insulin sensitivity maximal oxygen uptake physical activity obesity normal body weight 


  1. 1.
    Lohmann D, Liebold F, Heilmann W, Senger H (1978) Diminshed insulin response in highly trained athletes. Metabolism 27: 521–524Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Björntorp P, Fahlén M, Grimby G, Gustavsson A, Holm J, Renström P, Scherstén T (1970) Carbohydrate and lipid metabolism in middle-aged physically well-trained men. Metabolism 19: 631–638Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Parizskova J (1963) Impact of age, diet and exercise on mans body composition. Ann N Y Acad Sci 110: 661–674Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Åstrand I (1960) Aerobic work capacity in men and women with special reference to age. Acta Physiol Scand [Suppl] 169: 49–92Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Saltin B, Grimby G (1968) Physiological analysis of middle-aged men and former athletes. Circulation 38: 1104–1115Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Lindeberg W, Natvig H, Rogh A, Svendsen K (1956) Höyde og vektsundersökelser hos voksne men og kvinner. Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen 76: 361–368Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Bolivards DA, Hammond WH, Healy MJ, Tanner JM, Whitehouse RH (1975) Design and accuracy of calipers for measuring subcutaneous tissue thickness. Br J Nutr 9: 133–144Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Carrol JJ, Smith N, Bukson AL (1970) A colorimetric serum glucose determination using hexokinase and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase. Biochem Med 4: 171–180Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Heding LS (1966) A simplified insulin radioimmunoassay method. In: Donate I, Milhaud G, Sirchis I (ed) Labelled proteins in tracer studies. Euratom, Brussels, p 345–350Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Roeschlau P, Berub E, Svuber W (1974) Enzymatische Bestimmung des Gesamtcholesterins im Serum. J Clin Chem Clin Biochem 12: 226Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Eggstein H, Kreutz FH (1966) Eine neue Bestimmung der Neutralfette im Blutserum und Gewebe. Klin Wochenschr 44: 262–267Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Buccolo G, David H (1973) Quantitative determination of serum triglycerides by the use of enzymes. Clin Chem 19: 476–482Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Snedecor GW, Cochran WG (1968) Statistical methods, 6th ed. Iowa State Univ Press, Ames IowaGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Saltin B (1977) Physiological effects of physical conditioning In: Tybjerg Hansen A, Schnohr P, Rose G (eds) Ischaemic heart disease. Year Book Med Publ, Chicago, p 104–115Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Grimby G, Bjure J, Aurell M, Ekström-Jordal B, Tibblin G, Wilhelmsen I (1972) Work capacity and physiological response to work. Am J Cardiol 30: 37–42Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Gyntelberg F (1973) Physical fitness and coronary heart disease in male residents in Copenhagen aged 40-49. Dan Med Bull 20: 1–4Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Lindgärde F, Trell E (1978) Serum inorganic phosphate and serum calcium in middle-aged men. Acta Med Scand 203: 315–320Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Montoye HJ, Block WD, Metzner H, Keller JB (1977) Habitual physical activity and glucose tolerance. Diabetes 26: 172–176Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Koivisto V, Soman V, Conrad P, Hendler R, Nadel E, Felig P (1979) Insulin binding to monocytes in trained athletes, changes in the resting state and after exercise. J Clin Invest 64: 1011–1015Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Henriksson J, Reitman JS (1977) Time course of changes in human skeletal muscle succinate dehydrogenase and cytochrome oxidase activities and maximal oxygen uptake with physical activity and inactivity. Acta Physiol Scand 99: 91–97Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Saltin B, Lindgärde F, Houston M, Hörlin R, Nygaard E, Gad P (1979) Physical training and glucose tolerance in middle-aged men with chemical diabetes. Diabetes 28 [Suppl 1]: 30–32Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Keen H, Jarrett RJ, Alberti KGMM (1979) Diabetes mellitus: A new look at diagnostic criteria. Diabetologia 16: 283–285Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Saltin B, Lindgärde F, Lithell H, Eriksson KG, Gad P (1980) Metabolic effects of long-term physical training in maturity onset diabetes. In: Waldhäusl WK (ed) International Congress Series No 500. Excerpta Medica Elsevier North-Holland, Amsterdam, p 345–350Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. Lindgärde
    • 1
    • 2
  • B. Saltin
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of MedicineMalmö General Hospital, University of LundLundSweden
  2. 2.August Krogh InstituteCopenhagen UniversityCopenhagenDenmark

Personalised recommendations