Although Asian Indian (people of Indian subcontinent descent) men are shown to have higher total and truncal body fat as well as greater insulin resistance compared to white men matched for total body fat and age, data in women are not conclusive. The objective of this study was to compare total and regional fat distribution and insulin sensitivity between healthy young premenopausal Asian Indian and white women of similar body mass index (BMI). Twenty Asian Indian women (65% immigrants and 35% first generation living in Dallas) and 31 white women of similar age and BMI [age 24±3 vs. 25±4; BMI 22±4 vs. 23±5; mean±standard deviation (SD) in Asian Indian and white, respectively] without diabetes were evaluated with anthropometric measurements, underwater weighing for percentage of total body fat mass, magnetic resonance imaging of whole abdomen for measurement of abdominal subcutaneous and intraperitoneal fat mass, and euglycemic-hyperinsulinemic clamp study for measurement of insulin sensitivity. There were no differences in waist or hip circumference, total body subcutaneous abdominal or intraperitoneal fat mass, fasting plasma glucose, and insulin levels between Asian Indian women and white women. The peripheral glucose disposal rate (Rd) during hyperinsulinemic- euglycemic clamp was found to be almost identical in the two study groups (median value of 6.9 and 6.8 mg/min per kg of body weight, for Asian Indians and whites, respectively). For similar total or regional fat content, the glucose disposal rate was comparable in the two study groups. In conclusion, we demonstrate that young Asian Indian women do not have excess abdominal or intraperitoneal fat or insulin resistance for similar BMI compared to white women of European descent.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism