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Jornal de Pediatria
Print version ISSN 0021-7557
RODRIGUES, Anabel N. et al. The association between cardiorespiratory fitness and cardiovascular risk in adolescents. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2007, vol.83, n.5, pp. 429-435. ISSN 0021-7557. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0021-75572007000600006.
OBJECTIVE: Maximum oxygen uptake is emerging as the measure of preference for expressing cardiorespiratory fitness for the purposes of surveys of physical activity, due to its greater objectivity and lower propensity to errors. Studies indicate that this measure is better correlated with cardiovascular diseases. This paper proposes to relate cardiovascular risk factors in adolescents with their level of cardiorespiratory fitness. METHODS: The study enrolled 380 schoolchildren, 177 boys and 203 girls (10 to 14 years old), who were divided into two groups according to their cardiorespiratory fitness. Anthropometric assessment was carried out, hemodynamic measurements (arterial pressure and heart rate) were taken, cardiopulmonary exercise testing was performed and biochemical tests were run (triglycerides, total and partial cholesterol). RESULTS: Among the boys, significant differences were observed between boys defined as "weak" and those classed as "not weak" in terms of baseline heart rate, maximum oxygen uptake, body mass index and triglycerides. Among the girls, significant differences were detected between baseline heart rates, maximum oxygen uptake and body mass indices. In both sexes, the group classified as "weak" exhibited a significantly greater number of overweight individuals that the "not weak" group (x2 = 25.242; p = 0.000; x2 = 12.683; p = 0.000, for boys and girls, respectively). A significant association between cardiorespiratory fitness and triglycerides (x2 = 3.944; p = 0.047) was observed among the boys only. CONCLUSIONS: A low level of cardiorespiratory fitness appears to have a negative influence on cardiovascular risk factors among adolescents, especially with relation to overweight in both sexes and to biochemical profile in the male sex, providing evidence of the need for early preventative interventions.
Keywords : Oxygen consumption; adolescent; physical fitness; risk factors.