Effect of puberty on body composition

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

147 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose of review: Here we examine the effect of puberty on components of human body composition, including adiposity (total body fat, percentage body fat and fat distribution), lean body mass and bone mineral content and density. New methods and longitudinal studies have expended our knowledge of these remarkable changes. Recent findings: Human differences in adiposity, fat free mass and bone mass reflect differences in endocrine status (particularly with respect to estrogens, androgens, growth hormone and IGF-1), genetic factors, ethnicity and the environment. During puberty, males gain greater amounts of fat free mass and skeletal mass, whereas females acquire significantly more fat mass. Both genders reach peak bone accretion during the pubertal years, though males develop a greater skeletal mass. Body proportions and fat distribution change during the pubertal years as well, with males assuming a more android body shape and females assuming a more gynecoid shape. Pubertal body composition may predict adult body composition and affects both pubertal timing and future health. Summary: Sexual dimorphism exists to a small degree at birth, but striking differences develop during the pubertal years. The development of this dimorphism in body composition is largely regulated by endocrine factors, with critical roles played by growth hormone and gonadal steroids. It is important for clinicians and researchers to know the normal changes in order to address pathologic findings in disease states.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10-15
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Opinion in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Obesity
Volume16
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2009

Fingerprint

Puberty
Body Composition
Body Fat Distribution
Fats
Adiposity
Bone Density
Growth Hormone
Adipose Tissue
Bone and Bones
Insulin-Like Growth Factor I
Human Body
Sex Characteristics
Androgens
Longitudinal Studies
Estrogens
Steroids
Research Personnel
Parturition
Health

Keywords

  • Adiposity
  • Anthropometry
  • Body composition
  • Bone density
  • Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Internal Medicine
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

Cite this

Effect of puberty on body composition. / Loomba-Albrecht, Lindsey A; Styne, Dennis M.

In: Current Opinion in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Obesity, Vol. 16, No. 1, 02.2009, p. 10-15.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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