Differences in the obesity screening ability of 19 anthropometric parameters in young Japanese females: Comparisons of direct measurements, conventional and novel indices
Aim: The present study aimed to examine the usefulness of anthropometric parameters for obesity screening in young Japanese females by assessing their associations with indicators of adiposity obtained from a dual energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Methods: Screening ability of 19 anthropometric parameters was examined using a total of 50 young Japanese females who completed detailed anthropometry and a whole-body DXA scan. Anthropometric parameters were categorized into 1) measured variables, 2) conventional indices, and 3) novel indices and their correlations with body fat variables obtained from DXA were investigated. Using a percentage body fat (%BF) of 30.0% as a cut-off point of obesity, the Area Under the Curve (AUC) was observed from the Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) analysis and cut-off points of anthropometric parameters were determined. Results: While body mass correlated highly with total fat tissue mass in this sample (r = 0.847), body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) correlated most strongly with trunk fat and android fat tissues respectively (r = 0.820 and 0.865). However, all body composition variables were correlated with the sum of eight skinfolds (Sum8SF) if %BF was used (r ranged 0.672 – 0.834). Among anthropometric parameters examined, Ʃ8SF showed highest AUC for %BFTotal, %BFGynoid and %BFIAAT while Ʃ2SF and abdominal circumference (AbC) showed highest AUC for %BFTrunk and %BFAndroid respectively. Conclusion: Directly measured variables and conventional indices showed moderate to strong correlations with results from DXA. However, the sum of skinfolds, particularly Sum8SF, showed stronger correlations and superior screening ability for obesity. Although many novel indices have been utilized to screen obesity and metabolic abnormalities, observed results indicated that these indices may not necessarily better than measured values or conventional indices. Further investigations to confirm proposed cut-off points are warranted.
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