Physical activity and body mass index and their associations with the development of type 2 diabetes in korean men

Am J Epidemiol. 2012 Jul 1;176(1):43-51. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwr471. Epub 2012 Apr 29.


The authors examined the independent and combined associations of physical activity and obesity with incident type 2 diabetes among 675,496 Korean men from the database of the National Health Insurance Corporation. During an average follow-up of 7.5 years (1996-2005), 52,995 men developed type 2 diabetes. Men with overweight, obese I, and obese II classifications had 1.47, 2.05, and 3.69 times higher risk of type 2 diabetes, respectively, compared with normal weight men, and men with low, medium, and high activity had 5%, 10%, and 9% lower risk of type 2 diabetes, respectively, compared with inactive men after adjustment for confounders and physical activity or body mass index for each other. Overweight and obesity were detrimental within all activity categories, and meeting the activity recommendations (medium and high activity) was beneficial at all body mass index levels. Meeting the activity recommendations appeared to attenuate some negative effects of overweight or obesity, and the increased risk of type 2 diabetes due to inactivity was lower in normal weight men. Both preventing overweight or obesity and increasing physical activity are important to reduce the global epidemic of type 2 diabetes, regardless of body weight and activity levels.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Body Mass Index*
  • Databases, Factual
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / epidemiology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / etiology*
  • Exercise*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / complications
  • Overweight / complications*
  • Physical Examination
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Republic of Korea / epidemiology
  • Self Report
  • Young Adult