Comparison of body fat estimation using waist: height ratio using different 'waist' measurements in Australian adults

Kagawa, Masaharu, Byrne, Nuala M. and Hills, Andrew P. (2008) Comparison of body fat estimation using waist: height ratio using different 'waist' measurements in Australian adults. British Journal of Nutrition, 100 5: 1135-1141. doi:10.1017/S0007114508966095

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Author Kagawa, Masaharu
Byrne, Nuala M.
Hills, Andrew P.
Title Comparison of body fat estimation using waist: height ratio using different 'waist' measurements in Australian adults
Journal name British Journal of Nutrition   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0007-1145
Publication date 2008-11-01
Year available 2008
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1017/S0007114508966095
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Volume 100
Issue 5
Start page 1135
End page 1141
Total pages 7
Place of publication Cambridge, United Kingdom
Publisher Cambridge University Press
Language eng
Formatted abstract
The objective of the present study was to determine differences in predicting total and regional adiposity using the waist:height ratio (WHtR) calculated using different 'waist' measurements. Body composition of ninety-five males and 121 female Australian adults (aged 20 years and above) was measured using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. The WHtR was calculated using: (1) the narrowest point between the lower costal border and the top of the iliac crest (WHtR-W), and (2) at the level of the umbilicus (WHtR-A). Relationships between calculated WHtR and measured body composition, such as percentage body fat (%BF) and percentage trunk fat (%TF) were determined. Values obtained from WHtR-A were significantly greater than WHtR-W in both groups (P < 0.05). While no correlation differences between WHtR-W and WHtR-A in relation to body composition variables were observed, females showed significantly lower correlation with lean mass compared with BMI. Regression analyses showed that neither WHtR had an age influence on %TF estimation. Estimated %BF and %TF were comparable for both WHtR and also with estimated values using a BMI of 25 kg/m2. Sensitivity of excess %BF and %TF increased by using WHtR-A, particularly in females. In conclusion, the umbilicus measurement may be better than using the narrowest site in the WHtR calculation, particularly in females. To improve the screening ability of the WHtR and make comparisons between studies easier there may be a need to standardise the measurement location. Further studies are recommended to confirm the findings across different ethnic groups.
Keyword Height ratio
Percentage body fat
Percentage trunk fat
Waist circumference
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: Mater Research Institute-UQ (MRI-UQ)
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