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Diabetes

06 June 2012

Waist circumference linked to diabetes risk

Researchers have established that waist circumference is associated with risk of type 2 diabetes, independently of body mass index (BMI).

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A collaborative re-analysis of data from the InterAct case-control study conducted by Claudia Langenberg and colleagues has established that waist circumference is associated with risk of type 2 diabetes, independently of body mass index (BMI).

Reporting in PLoS Medicine, the researchers estimated the association of BMI and waist circumference with type 2 diabetes from measurements of weight, height and waist circumference, finding that both BMI and waist circumference were independently associated with type 2 diabetes risk but waist circumference was a stronger risk factor in women than in men.

These findings indicate that targeted measurement of waist circumference in overweight individuals (who now account for a third of the US and UK adult population) could be an effective strategy for the prevention of diabetes because it would allow the identification of a high-risk subgroup of people who might benefit from individualised lifestyle advice.

The authors comment: "Our results clearly show the value that measurement of [waist circumference] may have in identifying which people among the large population of overweight individuals are at highest risk of diabetes."

(EurekAlert, June 2012) 

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Dr. May currently works as a fulltime endocrinologist and has been in private practice since 2004. He has a variety of interests, predominantly obesity and diabetes, but also sees patients with osteoporosis, thyroid disorders, men's health disorders, pituitary and adrenal disorders, polycystic ovaries, and disorders of growth. He is a leading member of several obesity and diabetes societies and runs a trial centre for new drugs.

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