Japanese men have larger areas of visceral adipose tissue than Caucasian men in the same levels of waist circumference in a population-based study

Int J Obes (Lond). 2006 Jul;30(7):1163-5. doi: 10.1038/sj.ijo.0803248. Epub 2006 Jan 31.


Visceral adipose tissue (VAT) is an independent risk factor for metabolic and cardiovascular disorders. There has been no study that demonstrated different abdominal fat distribution between Asian and Caucasian men. As the Japanese are less obese but more susceptible to metabolic disorders than Caucasians, they may have larger VAT than Caucasians at similar levels of obesity. We compared the abdominal fat distribution of the Japanese (n=239) and Caucasian-American (n=177) men aged 40-49 years in groups stratified by waist circumference in a population-based sample. We obtained computed tomography images and determined areas of VAT and subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT). We calculated VAT to SAT ratio (VSR). The Japanese men had a larger VAT and VSR in each stratum, despite substantially less obesity overall. In multiethnic studies, difference in abdominal fat distribution should be considered in exploring factors related to obesity.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Asian People*
  • Body Constitution / ethnology*
  • Body Fat Distribution
  • Humans
  • Intra-Abdominal Fat / anatomy & histology*
  • Japan
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Subcutaneous Fat / anatomy & histology
  • White People