Men following an inactive lifestyle are more likely to develop health complications compared to women with a sedentary lifestyle, new evidence has identified.

Academics from the University of Missouri School of Medicine has found that men regularly eating sugary foods and not exercising are at risk of developing vascular insulin resistance.

Vascular insulin resistance is commonly associated with people who are obese and have type 2 diabetes, according to the study.

Chief author Dr Camila Manrique-Acevedo said: “We know that incidence of insulin resistance and cardiovascular disease is lower in premenopausal women compared to men, but we wanted to see how men and women reacted to reduced physical activity and increased sugar in their diet over a short period of time.”

During the study, the team of researchers analysed the health of 36 adults who reduced their daily step count and consumed a higher sugar intake.

They found that following an inactive lifestyle and eating a high intake of sugar disrupted the male participant’s response to insulin of blood vessels.

Manrique-Acevedo said: “These findings underscore a sex-related difference in the development of vascular insulin resistance induced by adopting a lifestyle high in sugar and low on exercise.

“To our knowledge, this is the first evidence in humans that vascular insulin resistance can be provoked by short-term adverse lifestyle changes, and it’s the first documentation of sex-related differences in the development of vascular insulin resistance in association with changes in adropin levels.”

Read the study in full in the journal Endocrinology.

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