Associations of the Limb Fat to Trunk Fat Ratio With Markers of Cardiometabolic Risk in Elderly Men and Women
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Background: It has been reported that the ratio of limb fat to trunk fat (LF/TF) is associated with markers of cardiometabolic risk in elderly men and women. However, it is unknown if LF/TF is associated with cardiometabolic risk beyond that explained by LF and TF independently. Objective: To determine if LF/TF is associated with markers of cardiometabolic risk in elderly men and women after control for LF and TF. A secondary objective was to examine the independent associations of LF and TF with markers of cardiometabolic risk. Methods: Subjects included abdominally obese men (n=58) and women (n=78) between 60 and 80 years of age. Regional adiposity was quantified using magnetic resonance imaging. Insulin resistance, fasting glucose, HDL-cholesterol, plasma triglycerides and adiponectin were determined. Regression analyses and partial correlations were used to assess the independent associations between variables. Results: After control for potential confounders, TF was positively associated with fasting glucose, insulin resistance and plasma triglycerides, and negatively associated with HDL-cholesterol (p<0.05). These associations were strengthened after further control for LF (p<0.05). LF was not associated with any marker of cardiometabolic risk after control for potential confounders (p>0.05). However, after further control for TF, LF was positively associated with HDL-cholesterol and negatively associated with plasma triglycerides (p<0.05). Plasma adiponectin was independently associated with both LF and TF in elderly women (p<0.05) but was not independently associated with either depot in elderly men (p>0.05). LF/TF was not associated with any marker of cardiometabolic risk after control for LF and TF. Conclusions: These results suggest that it is the absolute, rather than relative amounts of LF and TF which have the greatest influence on cardiometabolic risk in elderly men and women. Further, these results suggest that the associations between plasma adiponectin and regional adiposity are significantly influenced by sex in elderly men and women.