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Overweight, obesity and fat distribution in 50- to 64-year-old participants in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC)

  • M Haftenberger (a1), PH Lahmann (a1), S Panico (a2), CA Gonzalez (a3), JC Seidell (a4), H Boeing (a1), MC Giurdanella (a5), V Krogh (a6), HB Bueno-de-Mesquita (a4), PHM Peeters (a7), G Skeie (a8), A Hjartåker (a9), M Rodriguez (a10), JR Quirós (a11), G Berglund (a12), U Janlert (a13), KT Khaw (a14), EA Spencer (a15), K Overvad (a16), A Tjønneland (a17), F Clavel-Chapelon (a18), B Tehard (a18), AB Miller (a19), K Klipstein-Grobusch (a1), V Benetou (a20), G Kiriazi (a20), E Riboli (a21) and N Slimani (a21)...

Abstract

Objective:

To describe anthropometric characteristics of participants of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC).

Design:

A cross-sectional analysis of baseline data of a European prospective cohort study.

Subjects:

This analysis includes study populations from 25 centres in nine European countries. The British populations comprised both a population-based and a ‘health-conscious’ group. The analysis was restricted to 83 178 men and 163 851 women aged 50–64 years, this group being represented in all centres.

Methods:

Anthropometric examinations were undertaken by trained observers using standardised methods and included measurements of weight, height, and waist and hip circumferences. In the ‘health-conscious’ group (UK), anthropometric measures were predicted from self-reports.

Results:

Except in the ‘health-conscious’ group (UK) and in the French centres, mean body mass index (BMI) exceeded 25.0 kg m-2. The prevalence of obesity (BMI≥30 kg m-2) varied from 8% to 40% in men, and from 5% to 53% in women, with high prevalences (>25%) in the centres from Spain, Greece, Ragusa and Naples (Italy) and the lowest prevalences (<10%) in the French centres and the ‘health-conscious’ group (UK). The prevalence of a large waist circumference or a high waist-to-hip ratio was high in centres from Spain, Greece, Ragusa and Naples (Italy) and among women from centres in Germany and Bilthoven (The Netherlands).

Conclusions:

Anthropometric measures varied considerably within the EPIC population. These data provide a strong base for further investigation of anthropometric measures in relation to the risk of chronic diseases, especially cancer.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

*Corresponding author: Email haftenb@mail.dife.de

References

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