Incorporating some exercise to the daily routine could be of great help to individuals who have recently undergone gastric bypass surgery- it could decrease their risk of suffering from diabetes and significantly improve their heart health, the results of a new study claim.
“For a large percentage of the severely obese, they may exercise but don’t necessarily gain improvement in metabolic factors, so this is clinically significant,” said lead author Paul M. Coen of the division of Endocrinology and Metabolism in the Department of Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh. “The fact that we see this isn’t trivial,” he added.
The researchers took into consideration 128 adults for the study, who had recently undergone roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery, and divided them into 2 groups. One group received a health education program while another group participated in a semi-supervised moderate exercise program in addition with this health education program.
These sessions were held six times a month, and exercise sessions lasted 2 hours per week, which comprised of moderate exercise, mostly walking. The health education program revolved around discussions and demonstrations on the use of medications, nutrition and upper body stretching.
The researchers measured insulin resistance and glucose tolerance of these patients both before and after the six month long study using blood tests. They found that at the beginning of the study, individuals belonging to both the groups had similar glucose and insulin measures- however, they were poorer compared to that of individuals who had the same weight naturally and not after having undergone gastric bypass surgery.
When checked after the study period, greater improvement was found in those who exercised more than two hours per week. The researchers also found better cardiorespiratory fitness, glucose uptake and metabolism in individuals who exercised during the study period.
“Insulin sensitivity and cardiorespiratory fitness are both important indices of metabolic health,” Coen said. “Any improvement in both is likely to reduce future risk of cardiometabolic disease.”
“We hope that this study will play a role in formulating patient recommendations in the future, “Coen said.
“The common dogma is that (surgery) is a magic cure for diabetes and weight and maybe they don’t need to do anything else,” Coen said. “But our results show that there is still room for therapeutic benefit of exercise.”
The obesity society and several other organisations recommend atleast 30 minutes of physical activity per day per person in order to maintain a healthy weight and improved health in general.