A direct link has been established between insulin resistance and obesity; however, the influence of body fat content on insulin sensitivity in normal-weight individuals has not been explored. The aim of this cross-sectional study was to examine differences in insulin sensitivity, glycemic control, and blood lipid levels in normal-weight, healthy participants differing in their body fat. Physical activity, cardiorespiratory fitness, weight cycling, nutrient intake, and eating behavior were also assessed. Two groups of normal-weight (body mass index <25) young, healthy women were recruited: a high-body-fat group with body fat >30% of body weight (n=15) and a low-body-fat group (fat ≤30%, n=17). Data were collected between November 2003 and March 2004. Participants were matched for age and body fat distribution (assessed by the waist-to-hip ratio). The high-body-fat group displayed lower values of insulin sensitivity compared to the low-body-fat group (1/homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance 1.003±0.083 vs 1.385±0.158, respectively; P<0.05), whereas no differences were observed on blood lipid levels and glycemic control between groups. High-body-fat participants had lower cardiorespiratory fitness (25.2±1.2 vs 28.2±1.4 mL/kg/min in the low-body-fat group, P<0.05) and higher incidence of weight cycling of 1.0 to 2.5 kg loss per lifetime (18±3 kg vs 8±2 kg in the low-body-fat group, P<0.05). The latter variable was the only factor significantly associated with body fat. These data suggest that increased adiposity in normal weight, healthy women may adversely affect insulin sensitivity and that it may be related to differences in physical fitness and eating behavior.
To read this article in full you will need to make a payment
Purchase one-time access:Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
One-time access price info
- For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
- For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'
Subscribe:Subscribe to Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
Already an online subscriber? Sign in
Register: Create an account
Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect
- The “metabolically-obese,” normal-weight individual.Am J Clin Nutr. 1981; 34: 1617-1621
- Metabolic and behavioral characteristics of metabolically obese but normal-weight women.J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2004; 89: 5013-5020
- Phenotypic characteristics associated with insulin resistance in metabolically obese but normal-weight young women.Diabetes. 1999; 48: 2210-2214
- Increased visceral fat and serum levels of triglyceride are associated with insulin resistance in Japanese metabolically obese, normal weight subjects with normal glucose tolerance.Diabetes Care. 2003; 26: 2341-2344
- Obesity: Preventing and Managing the Global Epidemic. World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland1997
- Laboratory Diagnosis and Monitoring of Diabetes Mellitus.World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland2002
- Measuring Obesity: Classification and Description of Anthropometric Data. World Health Organization, Copenhagen, Denmark1988 (EUR/ICP/NUT 125)
- Aerobic work capacity in men and women with special reference to age.Acta Physiol Scand Suppl. 1960; 49: 1-92
- Development, validity and reliability of the Harokopio Physical Activity Questionnaire in Greek adults.2006 (Paper presented at 8th Panhellenic Congress on Nutrition and Dietetics, Athens, Greece)
- Compendium of physical activities: an update of activity codes and MET intensities.Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2000; 32: S498-S504
- Critical evaluation of energy intake data using fundamental principles of energy physiology: 1.Eur J Clin Nutr. 1991; 45: 569-581
- Predicting basal metabolic rate, new standards and review of previous work.Hum Nutr Clin Nutr. 1985; 39: 5-41
- Homeostasis model assessment: Insulin resistance and beta-cell function from fasting plasma glucose and insulin concentrations in man.Diabetologia. 1985; 28: 412-419
- Weight cycling questionnaire.in: St Jeor S. Obesity Assessment: Tools, Methods, Interpretations. Chapman & Hall, New York, NY1997
- The eating attitudes test: Psychometric features and clinical correlates.Psychol Med. 1982; 12: 871-878
- Limits of body mass index to detect obesity and predict body composition.Nutrition. 2001; 17: 26-30
- Insulin resistance and insulin secretory dysfunction as precursors of non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus.N Engl J Med. 1993; 329: 1988-1992
- Effects of intentional weight cycling on non-obese young women.Metabolism. 2002; 51: 149-154
- Effects of weight cycling on the resting energy expenditure and body composition of obese women.Int J Eat Disord. 1996; 19: 5-12
- Effects of weight cycling on body composition.Am J Clin Nutr. 1992; 56: 209S-216S
- Composition (lean and fat tissue) of weight changes in adult Danes.Am J Clin Nutr. 2002; 75: 840-847
- National Task Force on the Prevention and Treatment of Obesity.JAMA. 1994; 272: 1196-1202
- Abdominal obesity and the metabolic syndrome: Contribution to global cardiometabolic risk.Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2008; 28: 1039-1049
C. A. Anastasiou is a research associate, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Laboratory of Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece.
M. Yannakoulia is assistant professor, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Laboratory of Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece.
S. A. Kavouras is assistant professor, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Laboratory of Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece.
V. Pirogianni is a research assistant, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Laboratory of Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece.
G. Rapti is a research assistant, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Laboratory of Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece.
L. S. Sidossis is an associate professor, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Laboratory of Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece.
Accepted: August 14, 2009
© 2010 American Dietetic Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.