Date of Award

Spring 5-4-2020

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Kinesiology and Health

First Advisor

Dr. Walter R. Thompson

Second Advisor

Dr. Gordon Warren

Third Advisor

Dr. Brett Wong

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Rodney Lyn

Abstract

67% of women are overweight and obese. Overweight and obese individuals have more diagnoses of dyslipidemia than normal weight adults. Dyslipidemia often leads to atherosclerosis, and women who are overweight and obese are at an increased risk of developing atherosclerosis and experiencing stroke or heart failure. Walking is generally considered a safe exercise and can be beneficial for cardiovascular health. However, for overweight and obese women, the effects of walking on serum lipids and lipoproteins have demonstrated mixed results in interventions that are not focused on weight-loss. The purpose of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to determine if exclusive walking has a significant effect on serum lipids and lipoproteins in overweight and obese women. Meta-analyses of 22 exclusive walking interventions [N =1,206; median age = 47 years; median body mass index (BMI) = 28.40 kg/m2] demonstrated that walking can improve total cholesterol [raw mean difference (RMD) = 6.67 mg/dL, p = .04] and low-density lipoproteins (RMD = 7.38 mg/dL, p = .04). Walking reduces total cholesterol and low-density lipoproteins in overweight and obese women exclusive of diet and weight-loss, and the findings from this meta-analysis supports promotion of walking as an exercise therapy.

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