Date of Award

2011

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Kinesiology

Department

Kinesiology

First Advisor

Matthew J. Delmonico

Abstract

Background: Community-based interventions that incorporate resistance training and dietary changes have not been extensively studied in overweight and obese older adults. The purpose of this investigation was to determine the effects of a combined community-based resistance training and dietary intervention on body composition in overweight and obese older adults.

Methods: Ninety-five overweight and obese (BMI = 33.4 ± 4.0 kg/m2) older adults aged (69.2 ± 6.2) years completed an eight-week resistance training and dietary intervention at four Rhode Island senior centers. Participants performed resistance training twice per week using resistance tubing, dumbbells, and ankle weights. Participants also attended one weekly dietary counseling session on a modified Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension diet. Outcome measurements included anthropometrics and body composition.

Results: There were small but statistically significant changes in body mass (-1.0 ± 1.8 kg, p<0.001), waist circumference (-5.2 ± 3.8 cm, p<0.001), hip circumference (-5.3 ± 4.1 cm, p<0.001), fat mass (-0.8 ± 1.6 kg, p<0.001), and percent body fat (-0.5 ± 1.4%, p<0.001). Additionally, no significant change was seen in fat-free mass.

Conclusion: Community-based resistance training and dietary interventions can improve body composition in overweight and obese older adults. Future investigations should determine if this intervention is effective for sustaining long-term changes in older adults.

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