Journal of Epidemiology
Online ISSN : 1349-9092
Print ISSN : 0917-5040
ISSN-L : 0917-5040
Obesity and Central Adiposity in Japanese Immigrants: Role of the Western Dietary Pattern
Sandra RG FerreiraDaniel DG LerarioSuely GA GimenoAdriana Sanudo
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2002 Volume 12 Issue 6 Pages 431-438


We examined the association of nutritional factors with body fat deposition in a representative sample (n=530, aged 40-79 years) of first and second-generation Japanese-Brazilian population who was submitted to standardized questionnaires, including nutritional data, clinical examination and laboratory procedures. Dietary data were compared between groups of subjects defined by the presence of obesity or central adiposity. Associations of body mass index or waist circumference (dependent variables) with energy and nutrient intakes (main exposure of interest) were analyzed by multiple linear regression, with adjustment for gender, age, physical activity and generation. Groups of obese subjects and those with central adiposity consumed higher proportions of energy as fat and lower as carbohydrate than those without obesity and central adiposity (p<0.05). Stratifying by generation, second-generation was shown to take more energy as fat than the first-generation (p<0.05). In the regression models, pro- tein intake was the only variable significantly associated with body mass index. Replacing body mass index by the waist circumference, male sex and protein intake were shown to be independent predictors of central adiposity. When second-generation was taken, total energy intake and all macronutrient intakes became significantly associated with body mass index (p<0.05) but only protein intake predicted waist circumference. We speculate that Japanese-Brazilians, genetically prone to insulin resistance, when exposed to unfavorable environment will express a number of metabolic disturbances. A deleterious dietary pattern may contribute to weight gain, was associated with abdominal fat deposition in particular a protein-rich diet, and reflected by their waist circumference. Intra-abdominal fat could be triggering insulin resistance, which would explain the increased prevalence rates of diabetes, dyslipidemia and hypertension seen in Japanese-Brazilians. J Epidemiol 2002; 12:431-438.

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