Table 1

Studies included in meta-analyses

Time measured after
final exercise bout
Outcome measures
Aldred et al 20 Sedentary.
n=26 f
Age EXE (y) 50±5
Age CON (y) 49±5
Moderate-intensity walking, 74% HRmax,
Control maintained habitual sedentary lifestyle.
12 wk, 20–50 min per day, accumulating 180 min/wk.48 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin.
Asikainen et al 19 Sedentary, postmenopausal.
n=121 f
Age (y) EXE 55±4
Age (y) CON 56±4
Moderate-intensity walking, 45%–55% Embedded Image O2 max).
Control, no exercise.
24 wk, 5 days per wk, 1 session, duration dependant on exercise expenditure.48 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin.
Azarbayjani et al 21 Sedentary.
n=20 m
Age (y) EXE 23±1
Age (y) CON 23±2
Treadmill, 60%–70% HRR.
Control, no programmed physical activity, maintain diet.
12 wk, 3 days per wk, 30 min per day.24 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin
Coghill and Cooper22 Hypercholesterolaemic.
n=67 m
Age (y) EXE 55±5
Age (y) CON 56±5
Moderate-intensity walking 60%–75% HRmax.
Control, no exercise.
12 wk, 5 days per wk, 30 min per day.24 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin
Friedenreich et al 23 Inactive, postmenopausal
n=320 f
Age (y) EXE 61±5
Age (y) CON 61±6
Vigorous intensity various aerobic exercise 70%–80% HRR.
Control, maintain activity levels and diet.
12 months, 5 days per wk, 45 min per day.24 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin
Halse et al 24 Sedentary.
n=40 f
Age (y) EXE 34±5
Age (y) CON 32±3
Moderate-intensity cycling.
Control, no change to diet and lifestyle.
6 wk, 5 sessions per day, 45 min per session.48 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin
2 hglucose (after OGTT)
Houmard et al 25 Sedentary, overweight or obese.
n=154 (69 m, 85 f)
Age (y) EXE 52±1
Age (y) CON 51±1
All walking, low volume moderate intensity 40%–50% VO2peak, low volume high intensity and high volume high intensity 65%–80% VO2peak.
Control, no exercise.
6 months,~3 sessions per wk,~45 min per session.24 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin.
Insulin sensitivity index.
Jabbour et al 26 Obese
n=33 (15 m, 18 f)
Age (y) EXE 23±2
Age (y) CON
Aerobic interval cycling, 6 sets of supramaximal intervals, 2 min recovery.
Control, no training.
6 wk, 3 sessions per wk, approximately 15 min per session.24 h , 72 h and 2 wkFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin
Moghadasi et al 27 Sedentary, overweight, obese.
n=16 m middle-age
High-intensity treadmill 75%–85% VO2max.
Control, no change to diet or activity levels.
25 wk, 4 days per wk, 45 min per day.48 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin
Nordby et al 28 Sedentary, moderately overweight.
n=48 m
Age (y) EXE 28±4
Age (y) CON 31±7
High-intensity cycling, running, cross-training, rowing, 65%–85% HRR.
Control, maintain lifestyle and diet.
18 months, 3–4 sessions per wk, durations dependant on energy expenditure required.24 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin
2 h glucose (after HIC)
2 h insulin (after HIC)
Nualnim et al 29 Pre-hypertensive or stage 1 hypertension.
n=43 (11 m, 32 f)
Age (y) EXE 58±10
Age (y) CON 61±9
Moderate-intensity swimming 60%–75% HRmax
Control, maintain usual lifestyle and dietary habits.
21 wk, 3–4 days per wk,~45 min per session.24 hFasting glucose
O'Donovan et al 30 Sedentary.
n=67 m
Age(y) MOD 42±2
Age(y) HIE 41±4
Age(y) CON 41±3
Moderate-intensity and high-intensity cycling 60% Embedded Image O2max, and 80% Embedded Image O2max respectively.
Control, maintain diet and lifestyle.
24 wk, 3 sessions per wk, time as required to expend 400 kcal per session.24 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin
Insulin sensitivity.
Reichkendler, et al 31 Moderately overweight.
n=53 m
Age (y) EXE 29±2
Age (y) CON 31±1
High-intensity 62%–72% Embedded Image O2max, treadmill, rowing, elliptical machine, cycling.
Control, maintain sedentary lifestyle.
10–12 wk, duration dependent on time required to meet desired energy expenditure.36 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin.
2 hour glucose (after OGTT)
2 hour insulin (after OGTT).
Peripheral insulin sensitivity.
Stensvold et al 32 Metabolic syndrome.
n=43 (26 m, 17 f)
Age (y) EXE 50±10
Age (y) CON 47±10
Aerobic interval training, 4 min 90% HRpeak, exercise cycle.
Control, unclear.
12 wk, 3 sessions per wk, 43 min total.48 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin.
Weiss et al 33 Sedentary.
n=58 (m/f)
Age (y) 50–60
Moderate-intensity walking, elliptical machine, cycling and running 62%–80% HRmax.
Control, no instructions.
12 months,~6 sessions per wk,~60 min per session.48 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin.
Glucose 2h-AUC.
Insulin 2h-AUC.
Insulin sensitivity index.
Zehsaz et al 34 Sedentary, obese.
n=24 f
Age (y) EXE 35±4
Age (y) CON 35±6
Moderate-intensity treadmill and exercise cycling, 60%–75% HRmax.
Control, non-training.
12 wk, warm up plus ~45 min, 5 times per week.48 hFasting glucose.
Fasting insulin
  • AUC, area under the curve; CON, control group; EXE, exercise group; HIC, hyperinsulinemic isoglycemic clamp; HOMA-IR, homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance; HRR, heart rate reserve; HRmax, maximum heart rate; HRpeak, peak heart rate; HbA1c, glycosylated haemoglobin; OGIS, oral glucose insulin sensitivity; OGTT, oral glucose tolerance test; ∨O2max, maximum volume of oxygen; ∨O2peak, peak volume of oxygen; f, female; h, hour; m, male; min, minute; wk, week; y, year.