PURPOSE: Previous research has demonstrated that physical activity and muscle strengthening activities are independently and inversely associated with metabolic syndrome. Despite a number of studies examining the individual associations, only a few studies have examined the joint associations, and to our knowledge, no previous studies have examined the potential additive interaction of performing muscle strengthening activities and aerobic-based physical activity and their association with metabolic syndrome.
METHOD: Using data from the 2003 to 2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), we computed three separate multivariable logistic regression models to examine the individual, combined, and additive interaction of meeting guidelines for accelerometer-assessed physical activity and self-reported muscle strengthening activities, and their association with metabolic syndrome.
RESULTS: We found that individuals meeting physical activity and muscle strengthening activity guidelines, respectively, were at 61 and 25 % lower odds of having metabolic syndrome. Furthermore, individuals meeting both guidelines had the lowest odds of having metabolic syndrome (70 %), in part due to the additive interaction of performing both modes of exercise.
CONCLUSION: In this national sample, accelerometer-assessed physical activity and muscle strengthening activities were synergistically associated with metabolic syndrome.