Changes in patterns of fatness in adult men in relation to serum indices of cardiovascular risk: the Normative Aging Study

Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 2000 Oct;24(10):1369-78. doi: 10.1038/sj.ijo.0801397.


Background: Overweight and/or excessive weight gain, as well as changes in central fat deposition, have been implicated in increased incidence of coronary disease and type 2 diabetes.

Objective: We related adiposity (BMI, kg/m2, and waist circumference, WC, cm) to biochemical risk factors (cholesterol, triglyceride and glucose concentrations) for cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Design: Associations were examined both cross-sectionally and longitudinally, among 867 men enrolled in the Normative Aging Study (NAS). We included all participants with complete anthropometric and clinical data at both enrollment (average age 45 y) and after approximately 15 y of follow-up (average age 60 y). We used multiple linear regression analysis to test relationships between body fatness and change in body fatness and the biochemical indices.

Results: In adulthood, concurrent BMI and waist circumference related significantly to triglyceride and glucose concentrations and to 2 h glucose responses at two time points. Measures of fatness 15 y earlier were also predictive of later triglyceride and glucose measures. When included together, BMI, but not WC, remained independently associated with triglycerides at both time points, while WC, but not BMI, remained significantly associated with fasting glucose concentrations and glucose response at the follow-up observation. In contrast, gains in weight and abdominal fat from entry to follow-up related more strongly to serum cholesterol concentrations than did concurrent measures.

Conclusion: Attained weight, weight gain, and location of weight contribute differentially to these indices of cardiovascular and diabetes risk.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Body Composition*
  • Body Constitution*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control
  • Cholesterol / blood
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diabetes Mellitus / etiology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus / prevention & control
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / epidemiology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Regression Analysis
  • Risk Factors
  • Triglycerides / blood


  • Biomarkers
  • Blood Glucose
  • Triglycerides
  • Cholesterol