(HealthDay News) — For patients with type 2 diabetes, combined training seems better than aerobic exercise training or resistance training for glycemic control and blood lipids, according to a study published online July 2 in Diabetologia.

Lukas Schwingshackl, from the University of Vienna, and colleagues conducted a systematic review of randomized controlled trials comparing the effects of different training modalities on glycemic control and blood lipids in patients with type 2 diabetes. The effects of aerobic exercise training, resistance training, and combined training were examined in 14 trials with 915 participants.

The researchers found that aerobic exercise training was more effective than resistance training for improving hemoglobin A1c levels (P=0.0007) and fasting glucose (P=0.03). Combined training correlated with a significantly more pronounced decrease in hemoglobin A1c than aerobic exercise training (P=0.02). The mean differences in the change in hemoglobin A1c, fasting glucose, and triacylglycerols were all in favor of combined training vs. resistance training (P=0.0002, 0.0003, and 0.003, respectively). Only nonsignificant results were obtained after exclusion of trials with a high risk of bias.

“The present data suggest that combined training might be the most efficacious exercise modality to improve glycemic control and blood lipids,” the authors write.

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