Saturday, November 20, 2010


Postprandial Lipemia, Endothelial Dysfunction, Oxidative Stress, Atherosclerosis

So what does all that mean?  What part matters to you?  Should I just cut to the chase?

Postprandial is after a meal
Lipemia is fat in the blood (from that high fat meal you just ate) and is also called lipidemia
Endothelial dysfunction is the chemicals that are met to protect the lining of our arteries become unable to do their job. I.e. when the lining of your arteries are adversely effected (nitric oxide protects our artery walls and it becomes depleted under extreme oxidative stress) and plaque can build up
Oxidative stress is when the actions of our body on a cellular level leave a residue that can build up and cause damage - to our artery walls for example
Atherosclerosis is  thickening of the artery from the plaque buildup that occurs when we have excess oxidative stress and endothelial damage!

The only real new thing here is the lipemia story -

I read an article about this today in the ACSM's Certified News and it was incredibly technical. 

As a population, we know that we should limit red meats and saturated fat and because most of us do not,  statin medications are very popular.

This research is indicating that there is more to it than bad cholesterol and that at each high fat meal, damage occurs and this damage accumulates.  What did help in this study, was exercise. 

Scientists can measure the after meal blood fats and the chemical reactions that occur in the body.  Here they had people walk on a treadmill a couple of hours after the high fat meal and  learned that there was an immediate response - less endothelial dysfunction.  People who were very physically active to begin with, had less of a bad response to the high fat meal right after eating and if they too exercised after the meal, the dysfunction was decreased.  It sounds like the type, frequency or duration of the exercise is not important for this particular issue.  Exercise increases the odds that the chemicals that protect the arteries are working properly.

Take home message - DO limit saturated fat and DO exercise regularly - remember Exercise IS medicine - without the side effects.

The review that I read was in  ACSM's Certified News July-September 2010; Vol 20:3

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