OBJECTIVE: To compare ethnic differences in visceral adipose tissue (VAT), assessed by computed tomography, and type 2 diabetes risk among 55- to 80-year-old Filipino, African-American, and white women without known cardiovascular disease RESEARCH METHODS AND PROCEDURES: Subjects were participants in the Rancho Bernardo Study (n=196), the Filipino Womens Health Study (n=181), and the Health Assessment Study of African-American Women (n=193). Glucose and anthropometric measurements were assessed between 1995 and 2002
RESULTS: African-American women had significantly higher age-adjusted BMI (29.7 kg/m(2)) and waist girth (88.1 cm) compared with Filipino (BMI, 25.5 kg/m(2); waist girth, 81.9 cm) or white (BMI: 26.0 kg/m(2); waist girth: 80.7 cm) women. However, VAT was significantly higher among Filipino (69.1 cm(3)) compared with white (62.3 cm(3); p=0.037) or African-American (57.5 cm(3), p 0.001) women. VAT correlated better with BMI (r
DISCUSSION: VAT was highest among Filipinas despite similar BMI and waist circumference as whites. BMI and waist circumference were weaker estimates of VAT in Filipino and African-American women than in whites. Type 2 diabetes prevalence was highest among Filipino women at every level of VAT, but VAT did not explain their elevated type 2 diabetes risk.