About 20-25 percent of adults have the metabolic syndrome and have increased risk of developing both cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.
In this longitudinal study, investigators examined associations between childhood muscular fitness (strength, endurance, and power) and metabolic syndrome -- the latter assessed once they reached adulthood.
The results suggest that higher levels of childhood muscular fitness might protect against developing metabolic syndrome in adult years. Further, this relationship was found to be independent of the childhood cardiorespiratory fitness levels.
For example, those with the highest muscular fitness at ages 9-15 years, had an 80 percent lower risk of developing metabolic syndrome in adulthood -- in comparison to those who had low muscular fitness levels during childhood.
Supporting the current World Health Organization physical activity guidelines, these results highlight the importance of both muscular strengthening activities and aerobic exercise.
Overall, the study supports that a combination of increased muscular fitness, increased cardiorespiratory fitness and decreased adiposity in childhood may reduce future risk metabolic syndrome.
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Fraser, B. J., Huynh, Q. L., Schmidt, M. D., Dwyer, T., Venn, A. J., & Magnussen, C. G. (2016). Childhood Muscular Fitness Phenotypes and Adult Metabolic Syndrome. Medicine and science in sports and exercise.