Associations of physical activity with cardiometabolic risk factors


Associations of physical activity with cardiometabolic risk factors in individuals with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes


It is well-known that physical activity performed at moderate and vigorous intensities (e.g. walking, cycling and jogging) is positively associated with health outcomes. Several studies involving healthy populations reveal that reaching the recommended levels of physical activity possibly compensates for the negative effects of spending time sedentary. Less is known about the influence of physical activity performed at light intensity level (e.g. doing household chores and strolling in shops) on health outcomes. Individuals with poor metabolic control may benefit more than healthy individuals by being active in daily activities of light intensity physical activity and breaking up sedentary behavior. Most studies on the population with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes are laboratory based and research from daily life physical activity is lacking. As individuals we are all different and have diverse physical activity patterns over the week. Some individuals spend most of their daily time sedentary, but exercise two-three times per week, some are active on a daily basis by walking or cycling at a low pace, while others are almost not active at all. It has been recognised that the health associations of diverse patterns of physical activity, rather than daily minutes in each intensity, should be explored.


To investigate the associations between physical activity and sedentary behavior with cardiometabolic and endocrine biomarkers and other health related factors.


The project utilizes data collected for the Sophia Step Study. Patients diagnosed with either prediabetes or type 2 diabetes were recruited at the Primary Care Center and Insurance Clinic at Sophiahemmet in Stockholm and at Smedby Health Care Center located in southern Sweden. The Actigraph accelerometer GT1M was used to collect data on time spent in physical activity and sedentary behaviours. Cardiometabolic and endocrine risk markers included were HbA1c, fasting glucose, C-peptid, ApoA1, ApoB, Insulin, IGFBP1, triglycerides, HDLcholesterol, LDL cholesterol, blood pressure, waist circumference, sagittal diameter and fat percentage.


The project contributes with knowledge about current physical activity and sedentary patterns in a population with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes and the influence of different patterns on cardiovascular risk markers. This knowledge enables tailored recommendations for physical activity based on individual physical activity patterns and cardiovascular risk.


King Gustaf V and Queen Drottning Victoria’s Order of Freemasons Research Foundation, The Sibling Svenssons’s Foundation for Medical Research, The Swedish Diabetes Foundation, Skandia, Sophiahemmet foundation and Vårdalsstiftelsen.


Project manager: Jenny Rossen, Post doc, Department of Health promotion, Sophiahemmet University. Research group: Unn-Britt Johansson, Professor, Sophiahemmet University, Maria Hagströmer, Professor, Department of Neurobiologi, Care Sciences and Society, Karolinska Institutet and Philip von Rosen, Post doc, Department of Neurobiologi, Care Sciences and Society, Karolinska Institutet.