2019 Volume 49 Issue 5 Pages 183-190
Background: According to a national health and nutrition survey, the percentage of low-weight individuals with Body Mass Index (BMI) of 18.5 kg/m2 or lower is increasing amongst women in their 20s. Meanwhile, there is also an increasing risk of pregnant women of low body weight giving birth to low-weight or premature infants. Low birth-rate infants in turn carry a greater risk of adult-onset diseases later in life. In addition, cohort studies show that risk of death is lowest where BMI stands at 20.0–25.0kg/m2, while the risk of death increases greatly at a BMI of less than 20.0 kg/m2.
Objectives: Taking a BMI of 20.0 kg/m2 as a cutoff, we examined trends in blood sugar and plasma insulin after eating.
Methods: Subjects in a group of healthy young women were given rice balls to eat, subsequent to which changes in their blood sugar and plasma insulin where monitored. The low-weight group that had a BMI of less than 20.0 kg/m2 was compared to a group with a BMI of greater than 20.0 kg/m2.
Results: Though the blood sugar of the low-weight group was significantly higher both 30 minutes and 60 minutes after eating than the higher-weight group, there was no significant difference in plasma insulin levels between the two groups.
Conclusion: The study pointed to a potential risk of lifestyle related disease in low-weight young women, due to the fact that their blood sugar levels were significantly higher than the higher-weight group one hour after consuming the rice balls.