Effect of tai chi on glycaemic control, lipid metabolism and body composition in adults with type 2 diabetes: a meta-analysis and systematic review

Author: Shuai Guo1, Ying Xu, Jiawei Qin, Yannan Chen, Yue You, Jing Tao, Zhizhen Liu, Jia Huang
1 Rehabilitation Medicine College, Fujian University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Fuzhou, China. E-mail: 1426027751@qq.com.
Conference/Journal: J Rehabil Med
Date published: 2021 Feb 17
Other: Special Notes: doi: 10.2340/16501977-2799. , Word Count: 202

The aim of this systematic review was to evaluate the effects of tai chi on metabolic control and body composition indicators in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

Systematic review and meta-analysis of existing literature.

Electronic resource databases were searched to collect eligible studies. Two reviewers selected studies and independently evaluated methodological quality.

Twenty-three studies were included in this meta-analysis. The pooled results showed that tai chi had significant effects in improving metabolic indices, such as fasting blood glucose (mean difference (MD) = -1.04; 95% confidence interval (95% CI) -1.42. 0.66; p < 0.01) and total cholesterol (MD = -0.50; 95% CI -0.86 to -0.13; p < 0.01) compared with conventional clinical therapy. Most indices did not support the use of tai chi over aerobic exercise, except for glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) (MD = -0.24; 95% CI -0.49 to 0.00; p < 0.01) and high-density lipoprotein (MD = 0.07; 95% CI 0.01 to 0.12; p < 0.01).

Tai chi had better effects on metabolic control and body composition indicators than clinical conventional therapy, but the effects on HbA1c and high-density lipoprotein were only superior to aerobic exercise. The best time-window for tai chi intervention may differ with different metabolic indices.

Keywords: body composition; exercise; meta-analysis; metabolism control; type 2 diabetes mellitus; tai chi.

PMID: 33594445 DOI: 10.2340/16501977-2799