Cardiorespiratory fitness, fatness and the acute blood pressure response to exercise in adolescence

Zhengzheng Huang, Chloe Park, Nishi Chaturvedi, Laura D Howe, James E. Sharman, Alun D. Hughes, Martin G. Schultz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

Abstract

Objective
Exaggerated exercise blood pressure (BP) is associated with cardiovascular risk factors in adolescence. Cardiorespiratory fitness and adiposity (fatness) are independent contributors to cardiovascular risk, but their interrelated associations with exercise BP are unknown. This study aimed to determine the relationships between fitness, fatness, and the acute BP response to exercise in a large birth cohort of adolescents.

Methods
2292 adolescents from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (aged 17.8 ± 0.4 years, 38.5% male) completed a sub-maximal exercise step test that allowed fitness (VO2 max) to be determined from workload and heart rate using a validated equation. Exercise BP was measured immediately on test cessation and fatness calculated as the ratio of total fat mass to total body mass measured by DXA.

Results
Post-exercise systolic BP decreased stepwise with tertile of fitness (146 (18); 142 (17); 141 (16) mmHg) but increased with tertile of fatness (138 (15); 142 (16); 149 (18) mmHg). In separate models, fitness and fatness were associated with post-exercise systolic BP adjusted for sex, age, height, smoking, and socioeconomic status (standardized β: −1.80, 95%CI: −2.64, −0.95 mmHg/SD and 4.31, 95%CI: 3.49, 5.13 mmHg/SD). However, when fitness and fatness were included in the same model, only fatness remained associated with exercise BP (4.65, 95%CI: 3.69, 5.61 mmHg/SD).

Conclusion
Both fitness and fatness are associated with the acute BP response to exercise in adolescence. The fitness-exercise BP association was not independent of fatness, implying the cardiovascular protective effects of cardiorespiratory fitness may only be realized with more favorable body composition.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1693–1698
Number of pages6
JournalScandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports
Volume31
Issue number8
Early online date20 Apr 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The UK Medical Research Council and Wellcome Trust (217065/Z/19), together with the University of Bristol, provide core support for the ALSPAC study. A comprehensive list of grants funding the ALSPAC study is available on the ALSPAC website: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/alspac/external/documents/grant‐acknowledgements.pdf . ADH received support from the Wellcome Trust (086676/7/08/Z) and the British Heart Foundation (PG/06/145 & CS/15/6/31468) in relation to the work presented in this analysis. MGS is supported by a National Heart Foundation of Australia Future Leader Research Fellowship (reference 102553). ADH and NC work in a unit that receives support from the UK Medical Research Council (Programme Code MC_UU_12019/1). LDH is supported by a Career Development Award from the UK Medical Research Council (MR/M020894/1) and works in a unit funded by the UK Medical Research Council (MC_UU_00011/6) and the University of Bristol. This publication is the work of the authors and the corresponding author will serve as guarantor for the contents of this paper.

Funding Information:
The UK Medical Research Council and Wellcome Trust (217065/Z/19), together with the University of Bristol, provide core support for the ALSPAC study. A comprehensive list of grants funding the ALSPAC study is available on the ALSPAC website: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/alspac/external/documents/grant-acknowledgements.pdf. ADH received support from the Wellcome Trust (086676/7/08/Z) and the British Heart Foundation (PG/06/145 & CS/15/6/31468) in relation to the work presented in this analysis. MGS is supported by a National Heart Foundation of Australia Future Leader Research Fellowship (reference 102553). ADH and NC work in a unit that receives support from the UK Medical Research Council (Programme Code MC_UU_12019/1). LDH is supported by a Career Development Award from the UK Medical Research Council (MR/M020894/1) and works in a unit funded by the UK Medical Research Council (MC_UU_00011/6) and the University of Bristol. This publication is the work of the authors and the corresponding author will serve as guarantor for the contents of this paper. We are extremely grateful to all the families who took part in the study, the midwives for their help in recruiting them, and the whole ALSPAC team, which includes interviews, computer and laboratory technicians, clerical workers, research scientists, volunteers, managers, receptionists, and nurses.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

Keywords

  • adolescent
  • avon longitudinal study of parents and children
  • blood pressure
  • body composition
  • cardiorespiratory fitness
  • exercise

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