Objective: Measured resting energy expenditure (REE) and REEs calculated using the Harris-Benedict equation, Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization/United Nations University (FAO/WHO/UNU) equations (FAO equations), and the Liu equation were compared in Asian women.
Design: REEs were measured using indirect calorimetry in the morning after an overnight fast and compared with REEs calculated using the Harris-Benedict equation, the FAO equations, and the Liu equation. Height, weight, and 3-day diet records were also obtained.
Subjects: Thirty-six healthy, free-living Asian women aged 19 to 52 years and living in the United States were recruited from Washington State University, Pullman, and completed the study.
Statistical analyses: Paired t tests, stepwise regression, one-way analysis of variance, and Pearson correlation coefficients were used for the statistical analyses. Significance was set at P < or = .05.
Results: A significant correlation was found between measured REE and REE derived from the Harris-Benedict equation (R = 0.67, P < .0001), the FAO equations (R = 0.70, P < .0001), and the Liu equation (R = 0.70, P < .0001). However, measured REE was significantly lower than REE calculated using the Harris-Benedict and FAO equations by 8.5% (P < .001) and 5.4% (P < .01), respectively. No significant difference was noted between measured REE and REE derived from the Liu equation.
Applications: Caution must be taken when predicting REE of Asian women using the Harris-Benedict equation or the FAO equation. Indirect calorimetry or an equation specific to Asians, such as the Liu equation, is recommended when an accurate estimate is necessary.