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Trends in General and Abdominal Obesity among Korean Adults: Findings from 1998, 2001, 2005, and 2007 Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys

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      Abstract

      We examined trends in obesity among Korean adults, using body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) as reported in national surveys. Data (10,043 men and 12,758 non-pregnant women) were derived from four waves of the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey conducted in 1998, 2001, 2005, and 2007. Between 1998 and 2007, the distribution of BMI and WC showed shifts toward the right among men. Mean values of BMI and WC and the corresponding overweight (includes obesity) and obesity prevalences showed increasing trends in men but not in women. Women aged 60+ showed significant increases in obesity measures, including mean BMI and WC, and the associated prevalences. Among women aged 20-39, the prevalence of underweight increased significantly between 1998 and 2007, and BMI showed a decreasing tendency. These time trends in young women were the reverse of the trends in young men. In conclusion, policy efforts to abate overweight and obesity trends need to be exercised among men and older women. In addition, more national studies regarding potential increases in underweight among young women are warranted.

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      Most cited references 27

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      Harmonizing the metabolic syndrome: a joint interim statement of the International Diabetes Federation Task Force on Epidemiology and Prevention; National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; American Heart Association; World Heart Federation; International Atherosclerosis Society; and International Association for the Study of Obesity.

      A cluster of risk factors for cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes mellitus, which occur together more often than by chance alone, have become known as the metabolic syndrome. The risk factors include raised blood pressure, dyslipidemia (raised triglycerides and lowered high-density lipoprotein cholesterol), raised fasting glucose, and central obesity. Various diagnostic criteria have been proposed by different organizations over the past decade. Most recently, these have come from the International Diabetes Federation and the American Heart Association/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. The main difference concerns the measure for central obesity, with this being an obligatory component in the International Diabetes Federation definition, lower than in the American Heart Association/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute criteria, and ethnic specific. The present article represents the outcome of a meeting between several major organizations in an attempt to unify criteria. It was agreed that there should not be an obligatory component, but that waist measurement would continue to be a useful preliminary screening tool. Three abnormal findings out of 5 would qualify a person for the metabolic syndrome. A single set of cut points would be used for all components except waist circumference, for which further work is required. In the interim, national or regional cut points for waist circumference can be used.
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        Appropriate body-mass index for Asian populations and its implications for policy and intervention strategies.

         Michael Gnant (2004)
        A WHO expert consultation addressed the debate about interpretation of recommended body-mass index (BMI) cut-off points for determining overweight and obesity in Asian populations, and considered whether population-specific cut-off points for BMI are necessary. They reviewed scientific evidence that suggests that Asian populations have different associations between BMI, percentage of body fat, and health risks than do European populations. The consultation concluded that the proportion of Asian people with a high risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease is substantial at BMIs lower than the existing WHO cut-off point for overweight (> or =25 kg/m2). However, available data do not necessarily indicate a clear BMI cut-off point for all Asians for overweight or obesity. The cut-off point for observed risk varies from 22 kg/m2 to 25 kg/m2 in different Asian populations; for high risk it varies from 26 kg/m2 to 31 kg/m2. No attempt was made, therefore, to redefine cut-off points for each population separately. The consultation also agreed that the WHO BMI cut-off points should be retained as international classifications. The consultation identified further potential public health action points (23.0, 27.5, 32.5, and 37.5 kg/m2) along the continuum of BMI, and proposed methods by which countries could make decisions about the definitions of increased risk for their population.
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          Prevalence of overweight and obesity in the United States, 1999-2004.

          The prevalence of overweight in children and adolescents and obesity in adults in the United States has increased over several decades. To provide current estimates of the prevalence and trends of overweight in children and adolescents and obesity in adults. Analysis of height and weight measurements from 3958 children and adolescents aged 2 to 19 years and 4431 adults aged 20 years or older obtained in 2003-2004 as part of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a nationally representative sample of the US population. Data from the NHANES obtained in 1999-2000 and in 2001-2002 were compared with data from 2003-2004. Estimates of the prevalence of overweight in children and adolescents and obesity in adults. Overweight among children and adolescents was defined as at or above the 95th percentile of the sex-specific body mass index (BMI) for age growth charts. Obesity among adults was defined as a BMI of 30 or higher; extreme obesity was defined as a BMI of 40 or higher. In 2003-2004, 17.1% of US children and adolescents were overweight and 32.2% of adults were obese. Tests for trend were significant for male and female children and adolescents, indicating an increase in the prevalence of overweight in female children and adolescents from 13.8% in 1999-2000 to 16.0% in 2003-2004 and an increase in the prevalence of overweight in male children and adolescents from 14.0% to 18.2%. Among men, the prevalence of obesity increased significantly between 1999-2000 (27.5%) and 2003-2004 (31.1%). Among women, no significant increase in obesity was observed between 1999-2000 (33.4%) and 2003-2004 (33.2%). The prevalence of extreme obesity (body mass index > or =40) in 2003-2004 was 2.8% in men and 6.9% in women. In 2003-2004, significant differences in obesity prevalence remained by race/ethnicity and by age. Approximately 30% of non-Hispanic white adults were obese as were 45.0% of non-Hispanic black adults and 36.8% of Mexican Americans. Among adults aged 20 to 39 years, 28.5% were obese while 36.8% of adults aged 40 to 59 years and 31.0% of those aged 60 years or older were obese in 2003-2004. The prevalence of overweight among children and adolescents and obesity among men increased significantly during the 6-year period from 1999 to 2004; among women, no overall increases in the prevalence of obesity were observed. These estimates were based on a 6-year period and suggest that the increases in body weight are continuing in men and in children and adolescents while they may be leveling off in women.
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            [1 ]Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
            [2 ]Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
            Author notes
            Address for Correspondence: Young-Ho Khang, M.D. Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, 86 Asanbyeongwon-gil Songpa-gu, Seoul 138-736, Korea. Tel: +82.2-3010-4290, Fax: +82.2-477-2898, youngk@ 123456amc.seoul.kr
            Journal
            J Korean Med Sci
            JKMS
            Journal of Korean Medical Science
            The Korean Academy of Medical Sciences
            1011-8934
            1598-6357
            November 2010
            26 October 2010
            : 25
            : 11
            : 1582-1588
            2966994
            21060746
            10.3346/jkms.2010.25.11.1582
            © 2010 The Korean Academy of Medical Sciences.

            This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

            Categories
            Original Article
            Occupation & Environmental Medicine

            Medicine

            overweight, asia, thinness, korea, obesity, waist circumference, body mass index

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