1-South Asians have different deep and peripheral fat stores compared to Caucasians
Obesity (Silver Spring). 2010 Nov;18(11):2177-83.
Ethnic-specific differences in abdominal subcutaneous adipose tissue compartments.
Kohli S1, Sniderman AD, Tchernof A, Lear SA.
South Asians have a higher prevalence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) than Europeans. Studies have identified distinct subcompartments of subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) that provide insight into the relationship between abdominal obesity and metabolic risk factors in different ethnic groups. Our objective was to determine the relationship between SAT compartments and fat-free mass (FFM) between South Asian and European cohorts, and between men and women. Healthy Europeans and South Asians (n = 40
were assessed for FFM via dual energy X-ray absorptiometry, and SAT areas by computed tomography (CT). SAT was subdivided into superficial subcutaneous abdominal adipose tissue (SSAT) and deep subcutaneous abdominal adipose tissue (DSAT). Linear regression analyses were performed using DSAT and SSAT as separate dependent variables and FFM and ethnicity as primary independent variables adjusting for age, gender, income, education, and smoking status. Results showed that South Asian men had significantly higher amounts of DSAT (median 187.65 cm(2) vs. 145.15 cm(2), P < 0.001), SSAT (median 92.0 cm(2) vs. 76.1 cm(2), P = 0.046), and body fat mass (BFM) (25.1 kg vs. 22.6 kg, P = 0.049) than European men. In a fully adjusted model, South Asians showed significantly greater DSAT at any FFM than Europeans. Women had more SSAT at any given FFM than men and less DSAT at any given FFM than men, irrespective of ethnic background. In conclusion, South Asians had more DSAT than Europeans and men had relatively more DSAT than women. These data suggest that specific fat depots are influenced by ethnicity and gender; therefore, could provide insight into the relationship between ethnicity, gender and subsequent risk for CVD.2-South Asians have more fat for weight compared to South Asians and thus need to maintain a BMI of around 23
Children (Basel). 2017 Nov 22;4(11).
South Asian Children Have Increased Body Fat in Comparison to White Children at the Same Body Mass Index.
Eyre ELJ1, Duncan MJ2, Nevill A3.
The ability of body mass index (BMI) to predict excess fat in South Asian children is unknown. This cross-sectional study examines the influence of ethnicity on body fatness in children. Weight status and body fat were determined using BMI, waist circumference (WC), two skinfold sites (SF; triceps and subscapula) and leg-to-leg bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA; Tanita BF350, Tanita, Tokyo, Japan) in 194 children aged 8.47 ± 0.50 years from Coventry, United Kingdom. Biological maturity was also determined. Analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) identified significant differences between ethnic (p < 0.001) and gender groups' BMI (p = 0.026), with a significant covariate for skinfold (p < 0.001) and bioelectrical impedance (p < 0.001). For a given body fat value, South Asian children and females had a lower BMI value (-1.12 kg/m², p < 0.001 and -0.50 kg/m², p = 0.026, respectively, when adjusted for SF; -1.56 kg/m², p < 0.001 and -0.31 kg/m², p = 0.16, respectively, when adjusted for BIA) compared with white children and boys. The prediction model including ethnicity, gender and BIA explained 80.4% of the variance in BMI. Maturation was not found to be a significant covariate (p > 0.05). To conclude, the findings suggest that BMI cut-points may need to be lowered in South Asian children, and thus age-by-sex-by-ethnicity specific BMI cut-points are needed in children. Further research examining body composition with health parameters in this population is needed.3-The preferential visceral deposition of fat in South Asians leads to fatty liver and systemic inflammation explaining the high rates of coronary heart disease
J Clin Transl Hepatol. 2017 Mar 28;5(1):76-81.
Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease in South Asians: A Review of the Literature.
Singh S1, Kuftinec GN2, Sarkar S1.
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) are national and global epidemics. The disease is characterized by a spectrum of liver steatosis (fat deposition), inflammation (in NASH) and fibrosis. NAFLD and specifically NASH can lead to cirrhosis, which carry risks of progression to portal hypertension and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). NASH is also associated with higher mortality from cardiovascular causes. Most of the data for NAFLD has been obtained from the perspective of developed nations, although the disease is increasing and threatening to reach epidemic proportions across the world. Emerging data is notable for high prevalence of NAFLD in South Asian populations, presumably resulting from a combination of underlying genetic polymorphisms and changes in socio-economic status. It is also notable that an 'Asian Paradox' has been defined for NAFLD based upon the observation of lower than pre-defined body mass index (BMI), otherwise termed as "lean NAFLD", among this population. Yet, data remains limited in regards to the characteristics of NAFLD/NASH in this population. In this article, we present a review of the literature and discuss the prevalence, associated risk factors and burden of HCC in South Asians with NAFLD.4-South Asians need more aerobic exercise than Caucasians to remain `fit'
PLoS One. 2016 Aug 16;11(
Should Physical Activity Recommendations for South Asian Adults Be Ethnicity-Specific? Evidence from a Cross-Sectional Study of South Asian and White European Men and Women.
Iliodromiti S1, Ghouri N2, Celis-Morales CA2, Sattar N2, Lumsden MA1, Gill JM1.
International public health guidelines recommend that adults undertake at least 150 min.week-1 of moderate-intensity physical activity. However, the underpinning evidence has largely been obtained from studies of populations of white European descent. It is unclear whether these recommendations are appropriate for other ethnic groups, particularly South Asians, who have greater cardio-metabolic risk than white Europeans. The objective of our study was to determine the level of moderate-intensity physical activity required in South Asians adults to confer a similar cardio-metabolic risk profile to that observed in Europeans of similar age and body mass index (BMI) undertaking the currently recommended levels of 150 min.week-1. 148 South Asians and 163 white Europeans aged 18 to 70 years were recruited. Physical activity was measured objectively via vertical axis accelerations from hip-worn accelerometers. Factor analysis was used to summarize the measured risk biomarkers into a single underlying latent "factor" describing overall cardio-metabolic risk. Sex did not modify the association between physical activity and the cardio-metabolic risk factor, so data for both sexes were combined and models adjusted for age, sex, BMI and accelerometer wear time. We estimated that South Asian adults needed to undertake 232 (95% Confidence interval: 200 to 26
min.week-1 in order to obtain the same cardio-metabolic risk factor score as a white European undertaking 150 minutes of moderate-equivalent physical activity per week. The present findings suggest that South Asian men and women need to undertake ~230 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity per week. This equates to South Asians undertaking an extra 10-15 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity per day on top of existing recommendations.