, Volume 14, Issue 4, pp 417–427 | Cite as

The effect of exercise on plasma high density lipoproteins

  • Peter D. Wood
  • William L. Haskell
Symposium: High Density Lipoproteins (HDL) Structure, Function, Analysis, Clincial, Epidemiological and Metabolic Aspects of HDL


The influence of vigorous activity in man on plasma lipids and lipoproteins is reviewed, with particular emphasis on high density lipoproteins. Both cross sectional and longitudinal (or training) studies have been reported, many of them of less than ideal design. Nonetheless, a consistent pattern emerges in which increased exercise levels lead to lower plasma concentrations of triglycerides and very low density lipoproteins, and of low density lipoproteins. High density lipoprotein levels increase. Sometimes, but not uniformly, plasma total cholesterol level falls as the result of these changes. The increase in plasma high density lipoprotein appears to be the result largely of an increase in the less dense HDL2 subfraction. Plasma apolipoprotein A-I levels (but not apo-A-II levels) seem to increase concomitantly. The precise biochemical mechanism responsible for these changes has not been elucidated; but the recent finding of increased lipoprotein lipase activity in adipose tissue and muscle of endurance runners suggests that increased lipolytic rate of trigly ceride-rich lipoproteins may be an initial step in a sequence of events leading to higher plasma levels of HDL2.


High Density Lipoprotein High Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol High Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol Level Sedentary Control High Density Lipoprotein Level 
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Copyright information

© American Oil Chemists’ Society 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter D. Wood
    • 1
  • William L. Haskell
    • 1
  1. 1.Stanford Heart Disease Prevention ProgramStanford UniversityStanford

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