The prevalence of childhood obesity has increased at an alarming rate. The increased obesity rate in pediatrics parallels the increased risks for developing metabolic abnormalities, such as insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. In particular, the strong relationship between obesity and such health consequences is well explained by the excessive accumulation of depot-specific body adiposity, such as visceral adipose tissue, intrahepatic lipid content, intermuscular adipose tissue, and/or intramyocellular lipid content. Limited evidence suggests that both aerobic and resistance exercise alone, independent of weight loss, can be an effective therapeutic strategy for improving risk markers of metabolic abnormalities as well as inducing positive changes in depot-specific body adiposity in obese children and adolescents. However, the independent role of exercise alone (without calorie restriction) in body fat distribution is still unclear, and the results are less conclusive in pediatrics. In this brief review, the effects of aerobic and resistance exercise on depot-specific body adiposity changes in children and adolescents are discussed.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation