Sex Differences in Cardiometabolic Risk Factors among Hispanic/Latino Youth

J Pediatr. 2016 Sep:176:121-127.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2016.05.037. Epub 2016 Jun 22.


Objective: To determine the prevalence of obesity and cardiometabolic risk in US Hispanic/Latino youth and examine whether there are disparities by sex in cardiometabolic risk factors.

Study design: Study of Latino Youth is a population-based cross-sectional study of 1466 Hispanic/Latino youth (8-16 years old) who were recruited from 4 urban US communities (Bronx, NY, Chicago, IL, Miami, FL, and San Diego, CA) in 2012-2014. The majority of children were US-born (78%) and from low-income and immigrant families. Cardiometabolic risk factors were defined by the use of national age- and sex-specific guidelines.

Results: The prevalence of obesity was 26.5%. The prevalence of class II-III obesity, diabetes, and dyslipidemia was high (9.7%, 16.5%, and 23.3%, respectively). The prevalence of cardiometabolic risk factors increased with severity of obesity in both boys and girls. Boys had a greater prevalence of diabetes and of elevated blood pressure than girls (20.9% vs 11.8% and 8.5% vs 3.3%). In multivariable analyses, younger boys were more likely to have obesity class II-III than girls (OR 3.59; 95% CI 1.44-8.97). Boys were more likely to have prediabetes than girls (OR 2.02; 95% CI 1.35-3.02), and the association was stronger at older ages.

Conclusions: The prevalence of cardiometabolic risk factors was high in this sample of Hispanic youth. Boys had a more adverse cardiometabolic profile compared with girls that may put them at higher risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease later in life. Reasons for this disparity and the long-term clinical implications remain to be elucidated.

Keywords: CVD risk factors; Hispanic children; cardiometabolic risk factors; obesity; prediabetes.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Child
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Hispanic or Latino*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metabolic Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Obesity / epidemiology*
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Sex Distribution
  • Sex Factors
  • United States / epidemiology