Exercise did not preserve bone health after weight loss in older adults


  • Danielle Barron
  • Univadis Medical News
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Neither resistance or aerobic exercise has an impact on bone loss in older adults undergoing a community-based weight loss programme, although resistance training may minimise hip bone loss, researchers have shown.

A new study investigated whether aerobic or resistance training to counter weight-loss-associated bone loss in older adults was effective. A total of 187 older adults with obesity and cardiovascular disease and/or metabolic syndrome were randomised to participate in an 18-month community-based weight loss (WL) intervention, with follow up at 30 months. The effects of dietary-induced WL alone compared to weight loss plus aerobic exercise training (WL+AT) or resistance exercise training (WL+RT) on dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA)-derived bone health measures and circulating biomarkers of bone turnover was assessed.

Total hip areal bone mineral density (aBMD) was reduced by 2 per cent in all groups at 18 months, and a primary analysis showed no significant treatment effects for any DXA, biomarker, or computed tomography outcome. Secondary analyses revealed that total hip and femoral neck aBMD were modestly attenuated in the WL+RT group compared with the WL group. The authors also found WL alone or with RT, but not AT, was found to increase lumbar spine aBMD. 

The findings are published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research