Table 2: Summary of selected clinical trials in which leptin levels were measured as a clinical outcome before and after exercise.

NumberSubjectsExercise intensityMeasured parametersResults

Acute and short (≤60 min) exercise protocols without significant effect on leptin levels
163Seven young men (age, 27)30 min Ex at 25% and 75% of the difference between the lactate threshold (LT) and rest (0.25 LT, 0.75 LT), at LT, and at 25% and 75% of the difference between LT and VO2 peak (1.25 LT, 1.75 LT)Leptin AUC for all six conditions30 min Ex at different intensities does not affect leptin levels during or up to 3.5 hours after exercise
164Six healthy untrained menThree sessions of control, Max Ex, and prolonged Ex at 50% of VO2 maxSerum leptin, insulin, glucose, FFA, and glycerol REE and BF were also assessed(i) No significant differences were observed in leptin concentrations between the control and exercise session
(ii) Control serum leptin was positively correlated to BF and glucose and negatively correlated to REE
8315 healthy postmenopausal women (8 on HRT and 7 on NHRT)30 min treadmill at 80% VO2 maxLeptin level before and after exercise session and one month later as (without exercise) control valuesNo significant differences were observed between groups
165Eight young, lean, sedentary men41 min of cycle ergometry at 85% of VO2 max and 1-2 weeks later the same protocol but without exercise to be considered as controlSerum leptin, insulin, protein, and cortisol levels plus plasma glucose, EP, and NE concentrationsNo significant changes in leptin levels
166Ten young lean men (age, 23)Acute effects of 3 resistance exercise protocols including MS, MH, and SE on serum leptinSerum leptin, cortisol, glucose, and GHTypical resistance exercise protocols did not result in serum leptin changes

Longer duration (≥60 min) exercise protocols which resulted in decreased leptin levels
16712 fasted men (age, 30) to work on stationary cycle ergometer and 14 nonfasted marathon runner (age, 41) Intense exercise in both groups (four half-hour period at 75% VO2 max for cyclists and 101 mile running for runners)Blood leptin levels before, at the end, 6, 18, and 24 hours after exerciseNegative energy balance of exercise can reduce serum leptin concentrations
16829 male marathon runner compared with 22 age-, sex-, and BMI-matched sedentary controlsMarathon run (42.195 km) with a calculated energy expenditure of over 2800 CalLeptin levels one day before and after runThere was a significant reduction in blood leptin levels in runners
1699 trained men (age, 22–33)(i) A MAX short duration run
(ii) 60 min endurance ran at 70% of VO2 max consumption (END)
Plasma leptin, insulin, and glucose levels before, immediately after, 24, and 48 hours after exercise(i) Plasma leptin levels did not differ between time points for the MAX run
(ii) Leptin was significantly lower 48 h after exercise in END group
170Ten young men (age, 21)Acute heavy resistance protocol (50 total set comprised of the squat, bench press, and lat pull-down)Plasma leptin levelsLeptin concentration showed a delayed (approximately 9 h) reduction after acute resistance exercise
8245 males participated in one of the three competitive exercise protocols(i) A half marathon run (21.097 Km, 1400 Kcal)
(ii) A ski-alpinism (45 Km, 5000 Kcal)
(iii) An ultramarathon race (100 Km, 7000 Kcal)
(i) Serum leptin
(ii) Plasma free fatty acids
Serum leptin levels decreased significantly in ultramarathon and ski-alpinism but not in half marathon run

Exercise protocols in obese, prediabetic, and/or metabolic syndrome patients
171Fifty inactive men (age, 65–78, BMI, 28.7–30)Low intensity ( )
Moderate intensity ( )
High intensity ( )
Control ( )
For 24 weeks
Exercise energy cost
Skinfold sum
Body weight
VO2 max
Resting metabolic rate
Plasma leptin and adiponectin
Leptin was diminished by all treatments
17250 sedentary type II diabetic subjects divided to a diet therapy ( ) group or an exercise plus diet therapy groupExercise protocol consisted of walking and cycle ergometer exercise for 1 h × 5/week with the intensity of 50% of VO2 maxPlasma leptin levels
Fasting plasma insulin, glucose, cortisol, and HbA1c
Urinary 17-OHCS
Leptin significantly decreased in exercise group
8430 men and women (17 controls and 13 type II obese diabetics, age 40–55)Three repetition of maximal weight lifting bout 72 h after their last training bout of 6 weeks of resistance trainingSerum leptin levels plus glucose and insulinAcute exercise decreased leptin level in diabetic group
8534 women offspring of type II diabetic patients and 36 matched female controlsSeven weeks of exercise interventionInsulin sensitivity index, VO2 max, and plasma leptin levelPlasma leptin levels decreased only in the offspring of diabetic patients
17350 diabetic men divided to exercise training or standard therapy for 2 yearsEndurance and muscle strength training 4 times/week.HbA1c, insulin, leptin, blood lipids, blood pressure,VO2 max, and muscle strengthVO2 max, muscle strength, HbA1c, and leptin improved in exercise group

AUC: area under curve; BF: body fat; EP: epinephrine; Ex: exercise; FFA: free fatty acids; GH: growth hormone; HRT: hormone replacement therapy; MAX: maximum intensity; MH: muscular hypertrophy; MS: maximum strength; NE: norepinephrine; NHRT: nonhormone replacement therapy; 17-OHCS: 17-hydroxycorticosteroid; REE: resting energy expenditure; SE: strength endurance; VO2 max: maximal oxygen consumption.