Patients with Type 1 Diabetes Oxidize Fat at a Greater Rate than Age– and Sex–Matched Controls

Charles L. Dumke, Nathan A. Keck, Mary C. Mcarthur, Matthew H. Corcoran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Introduction: Elevated patient blood glucose and exogenous insulin administration may affect substrate oxidation in patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM); however, this has not been demonstrated with conviction. We examined substrate oxidation during incremental exercise in a group of subjects with T1DM and compared the results to those of an age-and sex-matched control group of subjects. Methods: A group of subjects with T1DM (n=29; 10 men, 19 women) was recruited for metabolic testing from a weeklong fitness camp. An age- and sex-matched control group of subjects (n = 29; 10 men, 19 women) was recruited from the local community. Subjects were required to avoid strenuous exercise for 48 hours and fast for 2 hours prior to metabolic testing. An incremental test to exhaustion on either a stationary cycle or treadmill was administered to all subjects. Maximum oxygen consumption of subjects was measured (T1DM subjects: 41.4 ± 1.9 mL/kg/min; control subjects: 48.4 ± 1.3 mL/kg/min). Blood glucose was recorded at 20 and 5 minutes before the exercise test, and at 5 and 20 minutes after the exercise test. Results: The T1DM and control subjects were matched for age, height, weight, and body composition. Subject blood glucose levels were higher in the group of subjects with T1DM than the control group at all times measured (P < 0.001). At all relative intensities of exercise (50%-80% maximum oxygen consumption; P < 0.050), absolute fat oxidation was higher in the group of subjects with T1DM (P < 0.050) and absolute carbohydrate oxidation was higher in the control group. Conclusion: Our data indicate that subjects with T1DM oxidize fat at a higher rate and carbohydrates at a lower rate when compared with age- and sex-matched controls at the same relative intensity of exercise, despite the elevated pre-exercise blood glucose of subjects with T1DM.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)78-85
Number of pages8
JournalPhysician and Sportsmedicine
Volume41
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2013

Keywords

  • blood glucose
  • carbohydrate oxidation
  • diabetes mellitus
  • fat oxidation
  • fuel utilization

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