T Nation

Decreased Arterial Compliance


This was brought up to me by my sister, who said she had read a couple medical texts talking about weight training leading to decreased arterial compliance, which is a stiffening of the arteries basically, and increasing one's risk for heart attack. Upon doing a google search it does seem that weight lifting does produce these affects.

I am just curious if anyone else has heard of this, or has any opinions on it.

There has to be some way to counter-balance this, cardio maybe, or it seems we would hear a lot more people in the bodybuilding and powerlifting world having heart attacks.


A few things:

  1. Most of the studies I looked at showed and acute effect, which disappeared if you stopped the workout or stopped training.

  2. Did you find a study that actually found a correlation between lifting and heart disease or just a few studies showing a correlation between lifting and stiff arteries? The latter doesn't necessarily make the former true.

  3. Until someone shows that lifting --> premature death, I wouldn't worry,


Sounds like a bunch of Who Cares.

If you think the bodybuilding lifestyle is the healthiest way to go about life, and this is shocking news to you, you may want to take a physiology class. :slight_smile:


Exercise has so many other benefits (mental included) that i would see weight lifting as very positive in terms of health over not training, even if it was shown to directly increase incidence of heart disease which it hasn't.



There's another article of similar nature describing the phenomenon of lifting giving you thicker arteries, pretty sure it was by Chris Shugart, though I may be mistaken. I can't find it at the moment


Its not that i think bodybuilding or powerlifting etc are the healthiest ways to live your life and have no negative affects, i just did not think that bodybuilding = greater risk of heart attack. I wanted to get the opinions on other more experienced members of this forum, and thanks for the responses so far.