HIIT Training & Heart Disease – Reap the benefits of better heart health

Many people with chronic health problems often shy away from vigorous exercise because they think it may be to difficult or unsafe for them to perform. However, research studies are showing that this may be the opposite of what they should be doing!

It's widely known that exercise influences many metabolic factors that improve lifestyle induced diseases, but we are finding that there is a superior exercise that gives maximal benefit. A study that looked at 273 participants determined that HIIT training (high-intensity interval training) may be more efficacious to increase health markers in those with coronary artery disease (plaque build up in the heart), obesity, and metabolic syndrome versus medium-intensity exercises. The participants did movements that increased their heart rate to 85-95% of their maximal heart rate for a total of 16 minutes, and 50-60% of their maximal heart rate for a total of 15 minutes in a simple 40-minute protocol (that included rest times).

These patients who performed HIIT training saw many positive changes in their health such as:

  • Better blood pressure numbers (average decrease of 10mmHg in the top number and 6mmHg in the bottom number)

  • Reduction in OxLDL – oxidized “bad” LDL cholesterol

  • Increased HDL “good” cholesterol

  • Reduction in triglycerides

  • Improved fasting blood sugar numbers and other diabetes markers

  • Reduction in weight

What do these changes mean for health?

This study shows that EXERCISE - moving your body, building muscle, and increasing your heart rate - can have a huge benefit to your overall health. Couple the exercise with eating a whole-foods, nutrient dense diet, decreasing stress and optimizing other blood biomarkers and you now have a recipe for reversing chronic disease and improved overall wellbeing and healthy aging.

HIIT training can be safely performed for people with chronic ailments with the right guidance from an experienced trainer and small class sizes to ensure you’re getting proper attention.

So jump on those kettle bells & get to work – your heart depends on it!


Written by:

Dr. Cassie Wilder

Minneapolis Integrative Medicine Center

1400 Van Buren St NE

Suite 200-226

Minneapolis, MN 55418

p. 952-222-7670

e. hello@mplsimc.com

w. www.mplsimc.com

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  1. Weston K, Wisløff U, Coombes J. High-intensity interval training in patients with lifestyle-induced cardiometabolic disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis. British Journal of Sports Medicine 2014;48:1227-1234.