Obesity and its metabolic consequences are major risk factors for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. However, lifestyle interventions, including exercise training and dietary components may decrease cardiovascular risk. Hence, this study was conducted to assess the effects of ginger supplementation and progressive resistance training on some cardiovascular risk factors in obese men. In a randomized double-blind design, 32 obese Iranian men (BMI ≥ 30) were assigned in to one of four groups: Placebo (PL, n = 8); ginger group (GI, n = 8) that consumed 1 gr ginger/d for 10 wk; resistance training plus placebo (RTPL, n = 8); and 1gr ginger plus resistance exercise (RTGI, n = 8). Progressive resistance training was performed three days per week for 10 weeks and included eight exercises. At baseline and after 10 weeks, body composition and anthropometric indices were measured. To identify other risk factors, venous blood samples were obtained before and 48-72 hours after the last training session for measurement of blood lipids (LDL-C, HDL-C, TG), systemic inflammation (CRP), and insulin resistance (HOMA-IR). After 10 weeks both RTGI and RTPL groups showed significant decreases in waist circumference (WC), waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), body fat percent, body fat mass, total cholesterol, and insulin resistance (p < 0.05) and a significant increase in fat free mass (FFM) (p < 0.05), while it remained unchanged in PL and GI. Further, significant decreases in the mean values of CRP were observed in all groups except PL (p < 0.05). Our results reveal that resistance training is an effective therapeutic strategy to reduce cardiovascular risk in obese Iranian men. Further, ginger supplementation alone or in combination with resistance training, also reduces chronic inflammation. However more research on the efficacy of this supplement to reduce cardiovascular risk in humans is required.
- Cardiovascular risk factors,
- resistance training,
- ginger supplementation
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