Exercise Improves Quality of Life in Indigenous Polynesian Peoples With Type 2 Diabetes and Visceral Obesity

William Sukala, Rachel Page, Chris Lonsdale, Isabelle Lys, David Rowlands, Jeremy Krebs, Murray Leikis, Birinder Cheema

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Background: To evaluate the differential effect of 2, group-based exercise modalities on quality of life (QoL) in indigenous Polynesian peoples with type 2 diabetes (T2DM) and visceral obesity. 

    Methods: Participants were randomized to resistance training or aerobic training performed 3 times per for 16 weeks. The Short-Form 36 was administered at baseline and post intervention to assess 8 domains and physical and mental component scales (PCS and MCS) of QoL. 

    Results: With the exception of Mental Health and MCS, all scores were lower at baseline than general population norms. Significant improvements were documented in several QoL scores in each group post intervention. No group x time interactions were noted. Pooled analyses of the total cohort indicated significantly improved Physical Functioning, Role-Physical, Bodily Pain, General Health, Vitality, Role-Emotional, PCS and MCS. Adaptation ranged from 5%-22%, and demonstrated a moderate-to-large effect (Cohen's d = 0.64-1.29). All measures of QoL increased to near equivalent, or greater than general norms. 

    Conclusion: Exercise, regardless of specific modality, can improve many aspects of QoL in this population. Robust trials are required to investigate factors mediating improvements in QoL, and create greater advocacy for exercise as a QoL intervention in this and other indigenous populations with T2DM. 

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)699-707
    Number of pages9
    JournalJournal of physical activity & health
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2013


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