Plasma lipid concentrations in professional cyclists after competitive cycle races
Mena, P.; Maynar, M.; Campillo, J.E.
European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology 62(5): 349-352
ISSN/ISBN: 0301-5548 PMID: 1874241 DOI: 10.1007/bf00634971
Plasma lipid concentrations were measured in professional cyclists at the beginning of the training season and both before the start and at the end of two cycle reaces of similar length (800 and 900 km in 6 days). Plasma concentrations of triglyceride, total and low density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C) and total cholesterol: high density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C) ratio were significantly lower and HDL-C concentrations significantly higher in cyclists compared to values in matched sedentary controls. At the end of the races, plasma concentrations of triglyceride and LDL-C were further reduced and HDL-C concentrations had increased compared to values at the start. At the end of the races, plasma concentrations of HDL-C were inversely correlated (r = -0.28, n = 45, P < 0.05) with triglyceride plasma concentrations. Body fat content, assessed as the sum of thicknesses was slightly reduced at the end of the race compared to the starting values. There was no significant correlation between skinfold thickness and plasma concentrations of HDL-C. Total plasma fatty acid concentrations were reduced and nonesterified fatty acids concentrations were increased at the end of the race compared to resting values. Consequently, the plasma concentrations of esterified fattya cids were significantly reduced after the race and there was a redistribution of the nonesterified fatty acids. The relative amounts of single fatty acids in the total fatty acid pool remained, however, remarkably constant. In conclusion, the results presented suggested that physical exercise, performed at the level of professional cyclists in a race, was an independent modifier of plasma lipid concentrations.