Gender-dependent evaluation of football as medicine for prediabetes

Abstract

Purpose

Training intensity and health effects of football were investigated gender specifically in individuals with prediabetes.

Methods

Participants with prediabetes (age 60 ± 6 years) were randomised into a football and dietary advice group (FD-men n = 13 and FD-women n = 14) or a dietary advice only group (D-men n = 12 and D-women n = 11). FD performed football training (twice/week for 16 weeks), while both groups received dietary advice. Body composition, bone variables, blood pressure, blood lipid profile and peak oxygen uptake (VO2peak) were determined pre- and post-intervention.

Results

Mean heart rate during football training was 79 ± 2 and 80 ± 3% HRmax for FD-men and FD-women, respectively, with peak heart rate values of 96 ± 1 and 97 ± 2% HRmax, with no gender differences. VO2peak increased more (P < 0.05) in FD-men and FD-women than in D-men and D-women. However, relative delta change in VO2peak was 21 ± 14% in FD-women, which was greater (P < 0.05) than in FD-men (11 ± 12%). Reduction in SBP and DBP, respectively, was similar in FD-men (− 10.8 ± 13.0 and − 7.3 ± 11.8 mmHg) and FD-women (− 11.3 ± 11.0 and − 7.1 ± 6.2 mmHg), with within-gender differences for men. Total plasma cholesterol and LDL cholesterol decreased (P < 0.05) by − 0.7 ± 1.1 and − 0.5 ± 0.9 mmol L−1, respectively, in FD-women and − 0.2 ± 0.4 and − 0.2 ± 0.3 mmol L−1 in FD-men, with no significant gender differences (P = 0.08). Body fat content was lowered (P < 0.05) by 3 and 4%-points in FD-men and FD-women, respectively.

Conclusion

Gender-mixed football training combined with dietary advice causes broad-spectrum health effects for men and women with prediabetes, with minor gender-specific differences. Thus, the intensity and training-induced effects of football training are also high for elderly women with prediabetes.

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Abbreviations

ANOVA:

Analysis of variance

BTM:

Bone turnover markers

BMC:

Bone mineral content

BP:

Blood pressure

CI:

Confidence interval

CRP:

C-reactive protein

CTX:

C-terminal telopeptide

BMD:

Bone mineral density

DBP:

Diastolic blood pressure

Diet-men:

Diet men

Diet-women:

Diet women

DXA:

Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry

ES:

Effect size

FD-men:

Football and diet men

FD-women:

Football and diet women

HR:

Heart rate

HDL:

High-density lipoprotein

IFG:

Impaired fasting glycaemia

IGT:

Impaired glucose tolerance

LBM:

Lean body mass

LDL:

Low-density lipoprotein

L2, L3 and L4:

Lumbar vertebrae

MAP:

Mean arterial pressure

OGTT:

Oral Glucose Tolerance Test

VO2peak :

Peak oxygen uptake

P1NP:

Procollagen type I N propeptide

RCT:

Randomized Controlled Trial

RHR:

Resting heart rate

SD:

Standard deviation

SBP:

Systolic blood pressure

TC:

Total cholesterol

TG:

Triglycerides

T2DM:

Type II diabetes mellitus

VO2max :

Maximal oxygen uptake

W:

Watt

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Acknowledgements

We would like to express our appreciation of the outstanding efforts and positive attitude of the participants. In addition, we are extremely grateful for the technical assistance provided by Sólfríð Skoradal, Jan Poulsen, Annika Gleðisheygg, Hjalti Gleðisheygg, Charlotta Nielsen, Brandur Jacobsen, Johild Dulavík, Hildigunn Steinholm, Ivy Hansen, Gunnrið Jóannesarson, Ann Østerø, Nina Djurhuus, Ebba Andreassen, Maud av Fløtum, Súsanna Olsen, Synøva Hansen, Ronnie Midjord, Noomi Holm, Virgar Hvidbro, Guðrið Andorsdóttir, and Jens Jung Nielsen. We would also like to thank Prof. Pál Weihe, Prof. Jann Mortensen, PhD-student Poula Patursson, and MD Jens Andreassen for their invaluable support. The study was supported by a grant from the Faroese Research Council (Sjúkrakassagrunnurin), as well as by the Faroese Football Association (Fótbóltssamband Føroya; FSF) and the Faroese Diabetes Organisation (Diabetesfelag Føroya).

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MM and PK conceived and designed the research project. MM, MS, TR and PK conducted the experiments. MM, MS and TR analyzed the data. MM and PK wrote the manuscript with inputs from MS and TR. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

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Correspondence to Magni Mohr.

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Mohr, M., Skoradal, MB., Andersen, T.R. et al. Gender-dependent evaluation of football as medicine for prediabetes. Eur J Appl Physiol 119, 2011–2024 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00421-019-04188-5

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Keywords

  • Soccer
  • VO2peak
  • Fat percentage
  • Blood pressure
  • Cholesterol
  • Cardiometabolic fitness