Objective: This study aims to examine the effects of one-year, once-weekly high-intensity interval training (HIIT) on body adiposity and liver fat in adults with central obesity.
Methods: One-hundred and twenty adults aged 18–60 years with central obesity (body mass index ≥25, waist circumference ≥90 cm for men and ≥80 cm for women). This is an assessor-blinded randomized controlled trial. Participants will be randomly assigned to the HIIT group or the usual care control group. Each HIIT session will consist of 4 × 4-min bouts at 85%–95% maximal heart rate, interspersed with 3-min bouts at 50%–70% maximal heart rate. The HIIT group will complete one session per week for 12 months, whereas the usual care control group will receive health education. The primary outcomes of this study are total body adiposity and intrahepatic triglyceride content. The secondary outcomes include abdominal visceral adipose tissue, subcutaneous adipose tissue, body mass index, waist circumference, hip circumference, cardiorespiratory fitness, lean body mass, bone mineral density, blood pressure, fasting blood glucose, insulin, triglycerides, glycated hemoglobin, cholesterol profile, liver function enzymes, medications, adherence to exercise, adverse events, quality of life, and mental health. Outcome measure will be conducted at baseline, 12 months (post-intervention), and 24 months (one-year follow-up).
Impact of the project: This study will explore the benefits of long-term once-weekly HIIT with a follow-up period to assess its effectiveness, adherence, and sustainability. We expect this intervention will enhance the practical suitability of HIIT in inactive adults with central obesity, and provide insights on low-frequency HIIT as a novel exercise option for the management of patients with central obesity and liver fat.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT03912272) registered on 11 April 2019. Copyright © 2022 The Society of Chinese Scholars on Exercise Physiology and Fitness. Published by Elsevier (Singapore) Pte Ltd.
CitationChin, E. C., Leung, C. K., Yu, D. J., Yu, A. P., Bernal, J. K., Lai, C. W., . . . Siu, P. M. (2022). Effects of one-year once-weekly high-intensity interval training on body adiposity and liver fat in adults with central obesity: Study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Journal of Exercise Science & Fitness, 20(2), 161-171. doi: 10.1016/j.jesf.2022.03.003
- Hepatic steatosis
- Abdominal obesity
- High-intensity exercise