Impact of progressive resistance training on lipids and lipoproteins in adults: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

Prev Med. 2009 Jan;48(1):9-19. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2008.10.010. Epub 2008 Nov 1.


Objective: Given the discrepant findings of progressive resistance training (PRT) on lipids and lipoproteins in adults, we used the meta-analytic approach to examine this issue.

Methods: Randomized controlled trials > or =4 weeks dealing with the effects of PRT on lipids and lipoproteins in adult humans > or =18 years of age and published between January 1, 1955 and July 12, 2007 were included. Primary outcomes included total cholesterol (TC), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), ratio of total cholesterol to high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (TC/HDL-C), non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (non-HDL-C), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), and triglycerides (TG). A random-effects model was used for analysis with data reported as means and 95% confidence intervals.

Results: Twenty-nine studies representing 1329 men and women (676 exercise, 653 control) were included. Statistically significant improvements were found for TC (-5.5 mg/dl, -9.4 to -1.6), TC/HDL-C (-0.5, -0.9 to -0.2), non-HDL-C (-8.7 mg/dl, -14.1 to -3.3), LDL-C (-6.1 mg/dl, -11.2 to -1.0) and TG (-8.1 mg/dl, -14.5 to -1.8) but not HDL-C (0.7 mg/dl, -1.2 to 2.6). Changes were equivalent to -2.7%, 1.4%, -11.6%, -5.6%, -4.6%, and -6.4%, respectively, for TC, HDL-C, TC/HDL-C, non-HDL-C, LDL-C, and TG.

Conclusions: Progressive resistance training reduces TC, TC/HDL-C, non-HDL-C, LDL-C and TG in adults.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lipids / biosynthesis*
  • Lipoproteins / biosynthesis*
  • Male
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic*
  • Resistance Training*
  • Young Adult


  • Lipids
  • Lipoproteins