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Dietary carbohydrates, glycemic load and serum high-density lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations among South Indian adults

Abstract

Objective:

To examine the relationship between dietary carbohydrates, glycemic load and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) concentrations in Asian Indians, a high-risk group for diabetes and premature coronary artery disease.

Subjects/methods:

The study population comprised of 2043 individuals aged 20 years randomly selected from Chennai Urban Rural Epidemiological Study (CURES), an ongoing population-based study on a representative population of Chennai (formerly Madras) city in southern India. Participants with self-reported history of diabetes or heart disease or on drug therapy for dyslipidemia were excluded from the study. Dietary carbohydrates, glycemic index and glycemic load were assessed using a validated interviewer administered semiquantitative Food Frequency Questionnaire (FFQ).

Results:

Both dietary glycemic load (P<0.0001) and total dietary carbohydrate intake (P<0.001) were significantly associated with higher serum triglyceride levels and lower serum HDL-C levels. For the lowest to highest quintile of glycemic load, the multivariate-adjusted mean HDL-C values were 44.1 mg per 100 ml and 41.2 mg per 100 ml (6.6% difference, P for trend<0.001), while for total carbohydrate it was less (5% difference, P for trend=0.016). The pattern of decrease in HDL-C for the lowest to highest quintile of glycemic load was more pronounced among men (1st vs 5th quintile: adjusted HDL-C: 4.3 mg per 100 ml decrease (10.3%)) than women (1st vs 5th quintile: adjusted HDL-C: 3.2 mg per 100 ml decrease (6.9%)).

Conclusion:

Our findings indicate that both total carbohydrates and dietary glycemic load intake are inversely associated with plasma HDL-C concentrations among Asian Indians, with dietary glycemic load having a stronger association.

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Acknowledgements

We thank the Chennai Willington Corporate Foundation, Chennai for the CURES field studies. Special thanks to Ms R Tamilselvi and Ms M Ezhilarasi, research dietitians for their help with the manuscript. This is the 48th publication from Chennai Urban Rural Epidemiology Study (CURES 48).

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Correspondence to V Mohan.

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Guarantor: V Mohan.

Contributor: GR and AG conducted the statistical analysis. GR wrote the manuscript and conceived the initial hypothesis. GR and RMS led the data collection. VS and VM contributed to the drafting of the paper and several revisions of the same. GR and VM were involved in the interpretation of data. All authors have contributed substantially to conception and design of the study or analyses and interpretation of the data. They approved the final version and will take public responsibility for the content of this paper. There are no conflicts of interest with any other organization.

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Radhika, G., Ganesan, A., Sathya, R. et al. Dietary carbohydrates, glycemic load and serum high-density lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations among South Indian adults. Eur J Clin Nutr 63, 413–420 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.ejcn.1602951

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.ejcn.1602951

Keywords

  • carbohydrates
  • glycemic load
  • glycemic index
  • HDL-cholesterol
  • Asian Indians
  • South Asians

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