Volume 229 (2013) Issue 1 Pages 11-17
Regular physical activity is associated with improvements of metabolic syndrome (MetS) risk factors. Furthermore, recent physical activity guidelines for health promotion recommend that moderate to vigorous physical activity should be performed in bouts lasting ≥ 10 min. Brisk walking is a popular and readily attainable form of moderate intensity physical activity and is suitable for the majority of individuals. However, it is unclear whether brisk walking lasting ≥ 10 min is associated with improvement in MetS. This study aimed to determine the effects of a 1-year lifestyle-based physical activity intervention with brisk walking of ≥ 10 min using a pedometer on the improvement in MetS. Three hundred and seventy-six overweight male employees with ≥ 1 MetS component(s) participated in this intervention study from 2008 to 2009 (age, 30-62 years; body mass index, 23.0-45.5 kg/m2). Overall, 316 participants (84%) completed the 1-year intervention. MetS was defined according to the Japanese criteria at baseline and after 1 year. Brisk walking lasting ≥ 10 min was significantly associated with the decrease in waist circumference (β = −1.479) and triglyceride (β = −31.260), and the increase in high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (β = 2.117). The brisk walking step counts were also significantly associated with higher odds for an improvement in MetS (OR, 1.48; 95% CI, 1.05-2.09) and abdominal obesity (OR, 1.45; 95% CI, 1.12-1.87). In conclusion, the lifestyle-based intervention with brisk walking of ≥ 10 min is an effective strategy to improve MetS in overweight male employees.