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Sex Differences In Body Fat Composition Predictive Of Cardiometabolic Risk Profile-1

Sex Differences In Body Fat Composition Predictive of Cardiometabolic Risk Profile
Posted on November 22, 2017 

Interview with:

Miriam Bredella, MD
Associate Professor of Radiology
Harvard Medical School
Department of Radiology
Massachusetts General Hospital
Boston, MA 02114

: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?


Response: It is well known that body composition differs between men and women, with women having proportionally more fat and men more muscle mass.


But not the amount of fat but its distribution is an important determinant of cardiometabolic risk, with certain ectopic fat depots, such as visceral adipose tissue, fat within muscle cells – intramyocellular (IMCL), and liver fat, being more detrimental than others, such as femorogluteal subcutaneous adipose tissue.


We therefore wanted to study sex differences in body composition and cardiometabolic risk in men and women with obesity.


We found that at the same BMI, men had relatively higher visceral adipose tissue, IMCL, liver fat, muscle and lean mass, while women higher percent fat mass and higher subcutaneous adipose tissue. This female anthropometric phenotype was associated with a better cardiometabolic risk profile at similar BMI compared to men. However, ectopic fat depots were more strongly associated with adverse cardiometabolic risk factors in women compared to men


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