Aims/hypothesis The aim of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of physical activity counselling in promoting physical activity in people with Type 2 diabetes and to evaluate resultant physiological and biochemical effects. Methods A total of 70 inactive people with Type 2 diabetes were given standard exercise information and randomised to receive physical activity counselling (n=35, experimental) or not (n=35, control). Physical activity consultations were delivered at baseline and after 6 months, with follow-up phone calls after 1, 3, 6 and 9 months. Changes from baseline after 6 and 12 months were assessed for physical activity (7-day recall and accelerometer), for physiological characteristics (body mass index and blood pressure) and for biochemical variables (HbA1c, lipid profile, fibrinogen, tissue plasminogen activator and microalbuminuria). Results Significant differences between groups were recorded for physical activity after 6 and 12 months (p<0.01). The experimental group had increased levels of physical activity from baseline to 6 months (p<0.01), with no decrease from 6 to 12 months (p>0.05). In the control group, accelerometer counts per week decreased from baseline to 12 months (p=0.03). Between-group differences (p<0.05) were recorded for the change in HbA1c (experimental: 0.26% decrease; control: 0.15% increase), for systolic blood pressure (experimental: 7.7 mm Hg decrease; control: 5.6 mm Hg increase) and for fibrinogen (experimental: 0.28 mmol/l decrease; control: 1.43 mmol/l increase) from baseline to 6 months, and for total cholesterol (experimental: 0.33 mmol/l decrease; control: 0.04 mmol/l increase) from baseline to 12 months (p<0.05). No significant differences were recorded in other measured variables. Conclusions/interpretations Physical activity counselling was effective in promoting physical activity in people with Type 2 diabetes. The counselling improved glycaemic control as well as the status of cardiovascular risk factors in these patients.
- Cardiovascular risk factors
- Glycaemic control
- Physical activity
- Physical activity counselling
- Type 2 diabetes