Waist circumference associated with risk of diabetes, independently of body mass index (BMI), reveals study. Reporting in this week's 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."
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