Comparison Between the Effects of Continuous and Intermittent Aerobic Exercise on Weight Loss and Body Fat Percentage in Overweight and Obese Women: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Endocrinology and Metabolism Research Institute, Shariati Hospital, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
International journal of preventive medicine 08/2013; 4(8):881-8.
Source: PubMed


Prevalence of obesity and overweightness in different societies is increasing. Role of physical activity in weight loss and also prevention from some chronic diseases has been discussed previously. The objective of this study was to compare the effect of two different aerobic exercises (intermittent and continuous exercises) while prescribed with concurrent calorie-restrict diet on the weight loss and body fat of overweight and obese females.
Fifteen individuals in intermittent group performed 40 min moderate Intensity exercise in 3 bouts per day for 5 days per week; the 15 participants of continuous group exercised a single 40 min bout per day, 5 days per week. Also, 15 participants were included in control group without exercise program. A self-monitoring calorie-restrict diet was recommended to all participants. The body fat percentage, waist circumference, and also skin fold thickness of all participants were assessed at baseline and 12(th) weeks.
The reduction of weight and BMI of participants in intermittent group (-3.33 ± 1.80 and -1.34 ± 0.70, respectively) was significantly more than comparable changes in continuous group (-1.23 ± 1.60 and 0.49 ± 0.65, respectively) (P = 0.048 and 0.041, respectively). After the intervention, there was no significant difference between case and controls in terms of body fat percentage, waist circumference, and sum of skin fold thickness.
It seems that moderate intensity intermittent exercise for more than 150 min/ week is more efficient than continuous exercise in weight loss of obese and overweight women.

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