Anthropometric and central obesity indices as predictors of long-term cardiometabolic risk among Saudi young and middle-aged men and women

Saudi Med J. 2017 Apr;38(4):372-380. doi: 10.15537/smj.2017.4.18758.


To investigate the prediction of long-term cardiometabolic risk using anthropometric and central obesity parameters. Methods: A total of 390 Saudi subjects (men 42.8%) aged 18-50 years were enrolled in a cross-sectional study in King Saud University, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia between August 2014 and January 2016. All participants were instructed to fast for 12 hours before taking blood samples for glucose and lipid panel analyses. A full anthropometric measurement and bioelectric impedance analysis was performed. The anthropometric and central obesity parameters were used for correlation with 30-year Framingham and life-time American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association risk scores. We used receiver operator characteristic curves to select the best predictors with the highest sensitivity and specificity. Results: The best discriminators of the long-term cardiometabolic risk among all the studied variables in men were the visceral adiposity index (VAI) (AUC=0.767), conicity index (CI) (AUC=0.817), and mid-arm muscular area (MAMA) (AUC=0.639). The best predictors for women were body mass index (AUC=0.912), waist circumference (AUC=0.752), and lipid accumulation product (AUC=0.632). The Kappa coefficient and 95% confidence interval ranged from 0.1 to 0.35, which suggests that there is a poor to fair agreement between these indices and cardiovascular risk scores. Conclusion: Long-term cardiometabolic risk can be predicted using simple anthropometric and central obesity indices, and these discriminators were not the same in Saudi men and women.

MeSH terms

  • Adiposity / physiology
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Anthropometry*
  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metabolic Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Metabolic Syndrome / prevention & control
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / diagnosis*
  • Risk Factors
  • Saudi Arabia / epidemiology
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Sex Factors
  • Waist Circumference
  • Young Adult


  • Blood Glucose