The associations of sedentary time and breaks in sedentary time with 24-hour glycaemic control in type 2 diabetes

Aye C. Paing, Kathryn A. McMillan, Alison F. Kirk, Andrew Collier, Allan Hewitt, Sebastien F. M. Chastin

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The aim of this study was to investigate the associations of accelerometer-assessed sedentary time and breaks in sedentary time with 24-h events and duration of hypoglycaemia (<3.9 mmol/l), euglycaemia (3.9–7.8 mmol/l), hyperglycaemia (>7.8 mmol/l) and above target glucose (>9 mmol/l). Thirty-seven participants with type 2 diabetes (age, 62.8 ± 10.5 years; body mass index, 29.6 ± 6.8 kg/m2) in Glasgow, United Kingdom were enrolled between February 2016 and February 2017. Participants wore an activity monitor (activPAL3) recording the time and pattern of sedentary behaviour and a continuous glucose monitoring (CGM, Abbott FreeStyle Libre) for up to 14 days. Linear regression analyses were used to investigate the associations. Participants spent 3.7%, 64.7%, 32.1% and 19.2% of recording h/day in hypoglycaemia, euglycaemia, hyperglycaemia and above target, respectively. There was a negative association between sedentary time and time in euglycaemia (β = −0.44, 95% CI −0.86; −0.03, p = 0.04). There was a trend towards a positive association between sedentary time and time in hyperglycaemia (β = 0.36, 95% CI −0.05; 0.78, p = 0.08). Breaks in sedentary time was associated with higher time in euglycaemia (β = 0.38, 95% CI 0.00; 0.75, p = 0.04). To conclude, in individuals with type 2 diabetes, more time spent in unbroken and continuous sedentary behaviour was associated with poorer glucose control. Conversely, interrupting sedentary time with frequent breaks appears to improve glycaemic control. Therefore, this should be considered as a simple adjunct therapy to improve clinical outcomes in type 2 diabetes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)94-100
Number of pages7
JournalPreventive Medicine Reports
Early online date5 Sep 2018
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2018


  • continuous glucose monitoring
  • CGM
  • GLUT4
  • glucose transporter 4
  • MET
  • metabolic equivalent task
  • interleukin
  • TNF
  • tumour necrosis factor
  • IL
  • sedentary lifestyle
  • physical activity
  • glucose
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • exercise

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