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Association of visceral fat with coronary risk factors in a population-based sample of postmenopausal women


OBJECTIVE: To investigate in a population-based random sample of postmenopausal women the adjusted association of visceral adipose tissue (VAT) with coronary risk factors.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional population-based random sample study.

SUBJECTS: Ninety-eight postmenopausal women (age 50–65 y).

MEASUREMENTS: Visceral and subcutaneous fat areas by computer axial tomography, anthropometry, lipid profile, fasting glucose and insulin, diet, physical activity, smoking status and alcohol intake.

RESULTS: Compared to women with low VAT, women with high VAT (>117.8 cm2) had a less favorable metabolic profile with significantly higher fasting glucose (120±50 vs 98±39), insulin (7.9±10 vs 5±8), triglycerides (172±69 vs 127±72), apolipoprotein B (119±24 vs 98±32) and significantly lower HDL-C (38±10 vs 46±14) values in the whole sample (n=98). A similar profile was found in women without diabetes and hypertension (n=39). In multiple regression models, VAT explained a portion of the variance of TG (6.2%) in the entire sample and of total cholesterol (12.4%), LDL-C (15.8%), triglycerides (16.3%), apolipoprotein B (11.6%), and fasting glucose (28.4%) in the group of non-diabetic or hypertensive women. Our VAT cut-off point of 117.8 cm2 corresponded to a waist circumference of 84 cm.

CONCLUSION: Our results in a random population-based sample of postmenopausal women confirm the association of VAT with most coronary risk factors. These associations persisted after adjusting for diet, physical activity, smoking status and alcohol intake.

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Correspondence to C Posadas-Romero.

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Hernández-Ono, A., Monter-Carreola, G., Zamora-González, J. et al. Association of visceral fat with coronary risk factors in a population-based sample of postmenopausal women. Int J Obes 26, 33–39 (2002).

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  • visceral fat
  • computed tomography
  • menopause
  • coronary heart disease
  • physical activity

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