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Benjamin J. Darter, Kathleen F. Janz, Michael L. Puthoff, Barbara Broffitt and David H. Nielsen

Background:

A new triaxial accelerometer (AMP 331) provides a novel approach to understanding free-living activity through its ability to measure real time speed, cadence, and step length. This study examined the reliability and accuracy of the AMP 331, along with construction of prediction equations for oxygen consumption and energy cost.

Methods:

Young adult volunteers (n = 41) wearing two AMP units walked and ran on a treadmill with energy cost data simultaneously collected through indirect calorimetry.

Results:

Statistically significant differences exist in inter-AMP unit reliability for speed and step length and in accuracy between the AMP units and criterion measures for speed, oxygen consumption, and energy cost. However, the differences in accuracy for speed were very small during walking (≤ 0.16 km/h) and not clinically relevant. Prediction equations constructed for walking oxygen uptake and energy expenditure demonstrated R 2 between 0.76 to 0.90 and between subject deviations were 1.53 mL O2 · kg-1 · min−1 and 0.43 kcal/min.

Conclusions:

In young adults, the AMP 331 is acceptable for monitoring walking speeds and the output can be used in predicting energy cost during walking but not running.

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Deirdre M. Harrington, Kieran P. Dowd, Catrine Tudor-Locke and Alan E. Donnelly

The number of steps/minute (i.e., cadence) that equates to moderate intensity in adolescents is not known. To that end, 31 adolescent females walked on a treadmill at 5 different speeds while wearing an ActivPAL accelerometer and oxygen uptake was recorded by indirect calorimetry. The relationship between metabolic equivalents (METs) and cadence was explored using 3 different analytical approaches. Cadence was a significant predictor of METs (r=.70; p<.001). Moderate intensity (3 METs) corresponded to 94 or 114 steps/minute based on the mixed model and ROC analysis, respectively. These two values, and a practical value of 100 steps/minute, were cross-validated on an independent sample of 33 adolescent females during over-ground walking at 3 speeds. The sensitivity and specificity of each value correctly identifying 3 METs were 98.5% and 87.2% for 94 steps/minute, 72.9% and 98.8 for 114 steps/minute and 96.5% and 95.7% for 100 steps/minute. Compromising on a single cadence of 100 steps/minute would be a practical value that approximates moderate intensity in adolescent females and can be used for physical activity interpretation and promotion.

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Hermann-J. Engels, John C. Wirth, Sueda Celik and Jodee L. Dorsey

This study assessed the influence of caffeine on metabolic and cardiovascular functions during sustained, light intensity cycling and at rest. Eight healthy, recreationally active adults participated in four randomly assigned, double-blind experimental trials of 60 min upright seated cycle exercise (30% VO2max) or equivalent rest with caffeine (5 mg ⋅ kg−1) or placebo consumed 60 min prior to data collection. Gas exchange was measured by open-circuit spirom-etry indirect calorimetry. Global blood flow was evaluated by thoracic impedance cardiography and arterial blood pressure by auscultation. A repeated measures ANOVA indicated that pretrial caffeine increased oxygen uptake and energy expenditure rate (p < 0.05) but did not change respiratory exchange ratio. Systolic, diastolic, and mean arterial blood pressure were elevated following caffeine intake (p < 0.05). Cardiac output, heart rate, stroke volume, and systemic vascular resistance were not significantly different between caffeine and placebo sessions. For each of the metabolic and hemodynamic variables examined, the effects of caffeine were similar during constant-load, light intensity cycling and at rest. These data illustrate that caffeine's mild thermogenic influence can be mediated without a major shift in substrate oxidation mixture. Caffeine at this dosage level alters cardiovascular dynamics by augmenting arterial blood pressure.

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Rebecca J. Toone and James A. Betts

This study was designed to compare the effects of energy-matched carbohydrate (CHO) and carbohydrate-protein (CHO-PRO) supplements on cycling time-trial performance. Twelve competitive male cyclists and triathletes each completed 2 trials in a randomized and counterbalanced order that were separated by 5–10 d and applied in a double-blind manner. Participants performed a 45-min variable-intensity exercise protocol on a cycle ergometer while ingesting either a 9% CHO solution or a mixture of 6.8% CHO plus 2.2% protein in volumes providing 22 kJ/kg body mass. Participants were then asked to cycle 6 km in the shortest time possible. Blood glucose and lactate concentrations were measured every 15 min during exercise, along with measures of substrate oxidation via indirect calorimetry, heart rate, and ratings of perceived exertion. Mean time to complete the 6-km time trial was 433 ± 21 s in CHO trials and 438 ± 22 s in CHO-PRO trials, which represents a 0.94% (CI: 0.01, 1.86) decrement in performance with the inclusion of protein (p = .048). However, no other variable measured in this study was significantly different between trials. Reducing the quantity of CHO included in a supplement and replacing it with protein may not represent an effective nutritional strategy when the supplement is ingested during exercise. This may reflect the central ergogenic influence of exogenous CHO during such activity.

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Kent W. Goben, Gary A. Sforzo and Patricia A. Frye

This study investigated the effect of varying exercise intensity on the thermic effect of food (TEF). Sixteen lean male subjects were matched for VO2max and randomly assigned to either a high or low intensity group for 30 min of treadmill exercise. Caloric expenditure was measured using indirect calorimetry at rest and at 30-min intervals OYer 3 hrs following each of three conditions: a 750-kcal liquid meal, high or low intensity exercise, and a 750-kcal liquid meal followed by high or low intensity exercise. Low intensity exercise enhanced the TEF during recovery at 60 and 90 min while high intensity enhanced it only at 180 min but depressed it at 30 min. Total metabolic expense for a 3-hr postmeal period was not differently affected by the two exercise intensities. Exercise following a meal had a synergistic effect on metabolism; however, this effect was delayed until 180 min postmeal when exercise intensity was high. The circulatory demands of high intensity exercise may have initially blunted the TEF, but ultimately the TEF measured over the 3-hr period was at least equal to that experienced following low intensity exercise.

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Chinmay Manohar, Shelly McCrady, Ioannis T. Pavlidis and James A. Levine

Background:

Physical activity is important in ill-health. Inexpensive, accurate and precise devices could help assess daily activity. We integrated novel activity-sensing technology into an earpiece used with portable music-players and phones; the physical-activity-sensing earpiece (PASE). Here we examined whether the PASE could accurately and precisely detect physical activity and measure its intensity and thence predict energy expenditure.

Methods:

Experiment 1: 18 subjects wore PASE with different body postures and during graded walking. Energy expenditure was measured using indirect calorimetry. Experiment 2: 8 subjects wore the earpiece and walked a known distance. Experiment 3: 8 subjects wore the earpiece and ‘jogged’ at 3.5mph.

Results:

The earpiece correctly distinguished lying from sitting/standing and distinguished standing still from walking (76/76 cases). PASE output showed excellent sequential increases with increased in walking velocity and energy expenditure (r 2 > .9). The PASE prediction of free-living walking velocity was, 2.5 ± (SD) 0.18 mph c.f. actual velocity, 2.5 ± 0.16 mph. The earpiece successfully distinguished walking at 3.5 mph from ‘jogging’ at the same velocity (P < .001).

Conclusions:

The subjects tolerated the earpiece well and were comfortable wearing it. The PASE can therefore be used to reliably monitor free-living physical activity and its associated energy expenditure.

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W. Daniel Schmidt, Gerald C. Hyner, Roseann M. Lyle, Donald Corrigan, Gerald Bottoms and Christopher L. Melby

This study examined resting metabolic rate (RMR) and thermic effect of a meal (TEM) among athletes who had participated in long-term anaerobic or aerobic exercise. Nine collegiate wrestlers were matched for age, weight, and fat-free weight with 9 collegiate swimmers. Preliminary testing included maximal oxygen consumption, maximal anaerobic capacity (MAnC) for both the arms and the legs, and percent body fat. On two separate occasions, RMR and TEM were measured using indirect calorimetry. VO2max was significantly higher in the swimmers while MAnC was significantly higher in the wrestlers for both the arms and the legs. RMR adjusted for fat-free weight was not significantly different between groups. The differences in total and percentage of TEM between the groups were not statistically significant, and there were no differences in baseline thyroid hormones. These data suggest that despite significant differences in VO2max and WAnT values following long-term aerobic and anaerobic exercise training, resting energy expenditure does not differ between these college athletes.

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Dac Minh Tuan Nguyen, Virgile Lecoultre, Yoshiyuki Sunami and Yves Schutz

Background:

Physical activity (PA) and related energy expenditure (EE) is often assessed by means of a single technique. Because of inherent limitations, single techniques may not allow for an accurate assessment both PA and related EE. The aim of this study was to develop a model to accurately assess common PA types and durations and thus EE in free-living conditions, combining data from global positioning system (GPS) and 2 accelerometers.

Methods:

Forty-one volunteers participated in the study. First, a model was developed and adjusted to measured EE with a first group of subjects (Protocol I, n = 12) who performed 6 structured and supervised PA. Then, the model was validated over 2 experimental phases with 2 groups (n = 12 and n = 17) performing scheduled (Protocol I) and spontaneous common activities in real-life condition (Protocol II). Predicted EE was compared with actual EE as measured by portable indirect calorimetry.

Results:

In protocol I, performed PA types could be recognized with little error. The duration of each PA type could be predicted with an accuracy below 1 minute. Measured and predicted EE were strongly associated (r = .97, P < .001).

Conclusion:

Combining GPS and 2 accelerometers allows for an accurate assessment of PA and EE in free-living situations.

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Joel D. Reece, Vaughn Barry, Dana K. Fuller and Jennifer Caputo

Background:

This study determined the validity and sensitivity of the SenseWear armband (SWA) during sedentary and light office duties compared with indirect calorimetry (IC).

Methods:

Participants (N = 22), 30 to 64 years of age, randomly performed 6 conditions for 5 minutes each (ie, supine, sitting no movement, standing no movement, sitting office work, standing office work, walking at 1.0 mph). Steady state for each activity (ie, average for minutes 4 and 5) was analyzed.

Results:

Energy expenditure (EE) for the SWA (1.58 kcal/min) and the IC (1.64 kcal/min) were significantly correlated, r(20) = 0.90, P < .001 and ICC = 0.90, 95% CI (0.699, 0.966). Correlation results for each condition varied in strength, r(20) = 0.53 to 0.83 and ICC = 0.49 to 0.81, but were all significant (P < .05). A significant interaction between measurement method and condition existed (P < .001). The SWA under predicted EE during standing with no movement, sitting office work, and standing office work.

Conclusion:

The SWA and IC EE rates were strongly correlated during sedentary and light activity office behaviors. However, the SWA may under predict EE during office work (standing or sitting) and when standing motionless, making it slightly less sensitive than IC.

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Kate Lyden, Natalia Petruski, Stephanie Mix, John Staudenmayer and Patty Freedson

Background:

Physical activity and sedentary behavior measurement tools need to be validated in free-living settings. Direct observation (DO) may be an appropriate criterion for these studies. However, it is not known if trained observers can correctly judge the absolute intensity of free-living activities.

Purpose:

To compare DO estimates of total MET-hours and time in activity intensity categories to a criterion measure from indirect calorimetry (IC).

Methods:

Fifteen participants were directly observed on three separate days for two hours each day. During this time participants wore an Oxycon Mobile indirect calorimeter and performed any activity of their choice within the reception area of the wireless metabolic equipment. Participants were provided with a desk for sedentary activities (writing, reading, computer use) and had access to exercise equipment (treadmill, bike).

Results:

DO accurately and precisely estimated MET-hours [% bias (95% CI) = –12.7% (–16.4, –7.3), ICC = 0.98], time in low intensity activity [% bias (95% CI) = 2.1% (1.1, 3.2), ICC = 1.00] and time in moderate to vigorous intensity activity [% bias (95% CI) –4.9% (–7.4, –2.5), ICC = 1.00].

Conclusion:

This study provides evidence that DO can be used as a criterion measure of absolute intensity in free-living validation studies.