Plasma lipid concentrations in college students performing self-selected exercise

Gary F. Merrill, Gregory S. Friedrichs

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10 Scopus citations


Plasma cholesterol and other blood lipids were determined in 64 college juniors and seniors during January and February 1989 (before exercise) and again during April and May 1989 (after exercise). A 14-week period of selfselected exercise was interposed between the before and after exercise cholesterol determinations. Cholesterol concentrations ranged from 127-273 mg/dl (before exercise) to 131-261 mg/dl (after exercise) in this group of students who were 22 ± 1 years of age. There were no statistically significant differences in cholesterol concentrations between the genders. Students could be further subdivided into groups with low (144 ± 3 mg/dl, n = 12), medium (176 ± 6 mg/dl, n = 35), and high (224 ± 6 mg/dl, n = 17) concentrations of cholesterol. Only students in the high cholesterol group experienced a significant reduction in total cholesterol and low-density-lipoprotein cholesterol after 14 weeks of exercise. High-density-lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations were significantly higher in women than in men in both the medium and high cholesterol subgroups before and after exercise. From these results it appears that a significant fraction of the young adult college population could be at increased risk of coronary heart disease because of inappropriately high concentrations of cholesterol. Moreover, self-selected exercise, if engaged in regularly, can reduce blood cholesterol significantly in students with high cholesterol concentrations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-27
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of the American College of Nutrition
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1 1990

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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