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Higher prevalence of type 2 diabetes in men than in women is associated with differences in visceral fat mass

  • Anna Nordström
  • Jenny Hadrévi
  • Tommy Olsson
  • Paul W. Franks
  • Peter Nordström
Publishing year: 2016-10-01
Language: English
Pages: 3740-3746
Publication/Series: Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Volume: 101
Issue: 10
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: The Endocrine Society

Abstract english

Context: We have previously found that visceral fat is a stronger predictor for cardiovascular risk factors than body mass index (BMI). Objective: This study sought to investigate the prevalence of diabetes in elderly men and women in relation to objectively assessed visceral fat volume. Design and Setting: The cohort consisted of a population-based sample of 705 men and 688 women, all age 70 y at the time of examination. Main Outcome Measures: Associations between body fat estimates, plasma glucose level, and diabetes prevalence were investigated using multivariable-adjusted statistical models. Results: The prevalence of type 2 diabetes was 14.6% in men and 9.1% in women (P <.001). Mean BMIwasslightlyhigherinmenthaninwomen(27.3vs26.6kg/m2; P =.01),withagreaterdifference in mean visceral fat mass (1987 vs 1077 g; P <.001). After adjustment for physical activity and smoking, men had about/approximately twice the odds of having type 2 diabetes compared with women (odds ratio [OR], 1.95; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.38-2.76). The inclusion of BMI in this model did not change the risk associated with male sex (OR, 1.93; 95% CI, 1.34-2.77). However, whenvisceralfatwasincludedasacovariate,malesexwasnotassociatedwithincreasedriskoftype 2 diabetes (OR, 0.77; 95% CI, 0.51-1.18). Conclusions: The higher prevalence of type 2 diabetes in older men than in older women was associated with larger amount of visceral fat in men. In contrast, differences in BMI was not associated with this difference.


  • Endocrinology and Diabetes


  • Genetic and Molecular Epidemiology
  • ISSN: 0021-972X
Paul Franks
E-mail: paul [dot] franks [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se

Principal investigator

Genetic and Molecular Epidemiology

+46 40 39 11 49



Lund University Diabetes Centre, CRC, SUS Malmö, Entrance 72, House 91:12. SE-205 02 Malmö. Telephone: +46 40 39 10 00