Android and gynoid fat percentages and serum lipid levels in United States adults

Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2015 Mar;82(3):377-87. doi: 10.1111/cen.12505. Epub 2014 Jun 28.


Context: Accumulating evidence suggests that fat distribution is a better predictor of cardiovascular disease than body mass index (BMI).

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate the association of android and gynoid fat percentages with lipid profiles to determine whether android and/or gynoid fat percentages are associated with serum lipid levels.

Design: A population-based cross-sectional study.

Patients: Five thousand six hundred and ninety-six adults (20 years and older) who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2003-2006.

Measurement: The regional body composition in the android and gynoid regions was defined by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA). The estimation of lipid risk profiles included total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) -cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) -cholesterol and triglycerides (TG).

Results: Regardless of gender, android and gynoid body fat percentages were positively and significantly correlated with BMI and waist circumference. After adjustment for age, ethnicity, education, smoking, alcohol consumption, dyslipidaemia and BMI, increases in android fat percentage were significantly associated with total cholesterol, TG and HDL cholesterol in males, and total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol and LDL cholesterol in females. The gynoid fat percentages showed a positive correlation with total cholesterol in males, whereas gynoid fat accumulation in females showed a favourable association with TG and HDL cholesterol. The observed associations differed according to ethnic groups.

Conclusion: Our results suggest that regional fat distribution in the android and gynoid regions have different effects on lipid profiles, and that fat in the android region, rather than the gynoid region, may be an important factor in determining the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Absorptiometry, Photon
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Body Composition / physiology
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cholesterol, HDL / blood*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lipoproteins, LDL / blood*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / blood
  • Triglycerides / blood*
  • Waist Circumference / physiology
  • Young Adult


  • Cholesterol, HDL
  • Lipoproteins, LDL
  • Triglycerides