Sports Medicine

, Volume 32, Issue 5, pp 297–307 | Cite as

Blood Lipids and Lipoproteins in Child and Adolescent Athletes

Leading Article


The purpose of this review is to describe the age- and gender-associated variation in blood lipids of young athletes and examine the association between training status, peak oxygen consumption (.VO 2peak), and body fatness with blood lipids in young athletes. Results from cross-sectional studies suggest similar levels of total cholesterol (TC), lower levels of triglycerides (TG) and low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C), and higher levels of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) in young athletes compared with controls. Longitudinal data show that the age- and gender-associated variation in blood lipids in young distance runners is similar to youth in the general population; TC and LDL-C remain stable, HDL-C declines during adolescence (especially in males), and TG increases with age. Considerable heterogeneity exists in the blood lipids of young athletes, including dyslipidaemic values. Age, sexual maturity status, training status, VO 2peak and body fatness are determinants of blood lipids in young athletes. VO 2peak is a significant predictor of HDL-C independent of body fatness. Further research iswarranted to examine: (i) the prevalence rates of dyslipidaemia in various sport groups; and (ii) the complex interactions of genes, biological maturation, exercise training, dietary intake and composition, skeletal muscle and adipose tissue properties on lipoprotein metabolism in young athletes.


Exercise Training Blood Lipid Training Status Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue Distance Runner 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The author has no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Adis International Limited 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Kinesiology and Health, Pediatric Health and Performance LaboratoryUniversity of WyomingLaramieUSA

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