Background: This study aimed to investigate the effects of 8-week aerobic training (AT) and saffron supplementation on inflammation and metabolism in middle-aged obese women with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Methods: Thirty-two obese women with T2DM were randomly divided into four groups (n = 8 in all groups): saffron + training (ST), placebo + training (PT), saffron supplementation (SS), and placebo (P). The ST and PT groups performed eight weeks of aerobic training (AT) (three sessions/week at 60–75% HRmax). A daily dose of 400 mg saffron powder was consumed by the ST and SS groups for 8 weeks. Blood samples were taken after 12 h of fasting, 48 h before the first AT session, 48 h and two weeks after the last AT session. Results: AT, saffron supplementation, and their combination affected body mass index (BMI), homeostatic model assessment for insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), and serum levels of insulin, adiponectin, interleukin-6 (IL-6), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), cholesterol, and triglyceride (TG) (p < 0.05). However, body weight, body fat percentage, and serum levels of glucose, resistin, tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), irisin, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) showed significant changes in the ST group only (p < 0.05). In addition, a significant difference was seen between all factors in post-training and follow-up in the ST group (p < 0.05). Conclusions: Saffron supplementation at a dose of 400 mg/day, when combined with AT, could improve inflammation, metabolism, glycemic status, and lipid profile in T2DM patients, and these changes are sustainable at up to 2 weeks of detraining.
- aerobic training
- insulin resistance
- pro-inflammatory cytokines
- type 2 diabetes
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation