Can fast and furious exercise help prevent diabetes?
Short bursts of high-intensity exercise could help people with
non-alcoholic fatty liver disease reduce their risk of type 2
A trial led by University of Queensland School
of Human Movement and Nutrition
Sciences researcher Dr Shelley
Keating will investigate if high intensity interval
training (HIIT) can improve insulin sensitivity, fitness and other
cardiovascular disease risk factors.
"Other than weight loss, there is no accepted therapy for
improving non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) - a type of fatty
liver disease - which is strongly linked to type 2 diabetes and
cardiovascular disease," Dr Keating said.
"We have recently demonstrated that exercise therapy reduces
liver fat in adults with obesity, but patients with NASH may need a
more intense 'dose' of exercise.
"We hope to establish that high-intensity exercise is a safe,
feasible and effective therapy for improving insulin resistance and
other cardio-metabolic risk factors.
"Given that up to one-third of Australians have non-alcoholic
fatty liver disease, and the subsequent rate of progression to NASH
is around 30 per cent, the impact on the community is
Study participants will complete 12 weeks of HIIT supervised by
an accredited exercise physiologist at UQ's St Lucia campus in
Brisbane, followed by 12 weeks of HIIT at home.
"The sessions will involve short, intense bursts of exercise -
around four minutes on a treadmill or exercise bike at near maximum
capacity - interspersed with more moderate exercise," Dr Keating
"Health measures including insulin sensitivity, body
composition, vascular function, and fitness will be assessed before
and after the supervised and home-based phases.
"It is very important that individuals can continue on with HIIT
in the long-term so that the health benefits can be sustained," Dr
People with biopsy-proven NASH, or their clinicians, should
contact Dr Keating (see below) for details on how to take part in
Australia is funding the research.
Media: Dr Shelley Keating, firstname.lastname@example.org
, +61 7 3346 9999, +61 405 735 200; Dani Nash, UQ
, +61 7 3346 3035.