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August 16, 1985

Differential Effects of Exercise on Serum Lipid and Lipoprotein Levels Seen With Changes in Body Weight: A Meta-analysis

Author Affiliations

From the Measurement Lab, Department of Physical Education and Recreation, University of Colorado, Boulder (Dr Tran); and the Exercise Physiology Lab, Department of Health and Physical Education, University of Virginia, Charlottesville (Dr Weltman).

JAMA. 1985;254(7):919-924. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03360070057023

Ninety-five studies conducted between September 1955 and October 1983 measuring changes in human serum lipid and lipoprotein levels in response to exercise training were analyzed using meta-analysis. Change in body weight during exercise training may confound observed serum lipid and lipoprotein level changes; thus, data from these studies were partitioned into those where subjects gained body weight, maintained body weight, or lost body weight. Results showed differential changes in cholesterol, triglyceride, low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C), high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol, and cholesterol/high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol levels in the three body-weight categories. Where body weight did not change, cholesterol and LDL-C levels decreased significantly (7.3 mg/dL and 3.3 mg/dL, respectively). Where body weight decreased, cholesterol and LDL-C levels also decreased significantly (13.2 mg/dL and 11.1 mg/dL, respectively). However, with body-weight increase, cholesterol and LDL-C levels increased by 2.9 mg/dL and 3.0 mg/dL, respectively. These results suggest that reductions in cholesterol and LDL-C levels were greatest when exercise training was combined with body-weight losses.

(JAMA 1985;254:919-924)

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