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Equations based on simple anthropometric measurements to predict body fat percentage (BF%) are lacking in Chinese population with increasing prevalence of obesity and related abnormalities. We aimed to develop and validate BF% equations in two independent population-based samples of Chinese men and women. The equations were developed among 960 Chinese Hans living in Shanghai (age 46·2 (sd 5·3) years; 36·7 % male) using a stepwise linear regression and were subsequently validated in 1150 Shanghai residents (58·7 (sd 6·0) years; 41·7 % male; 99 % Chinese Hans, 1 % Chinese minorities). The associations of equation-derived BF% with changes of 6-year cardiometabolic outcomes and incident type 2 diabetes (T2D) were evaluated in a sub-cohort of 780 Chinese, compared with BF% measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA; BF%-DXA). Sex-specific equations were established with age, BMI and waist circumference as independent variables. The BF% calculated using new sex-specific equations (BF%-CSS) were in reasonable agreement with BF%-DXA (mean difference: 0·08 (2 sd 6·64) %, P= 0·606 in men; 0·45 (2 sd 6·88) %, P< 0·001 in women). In multivariate-adjusted models, the BF%-CSS and BF%-DXA showed comparable associations with 6-year changes in TAG, HDL-cholesterol, diastolic blood pressure, C-reactive protein and uric acid (P for comparisons ≥ 0·05). Meanwhile, the BF%-CSS and BF%-DXA had comparable areas under the receiver operating characteristic curves for associations with incident T2D (men P= 0·327; women P= 0·159). The BF% equations might be used as surrogates for DXA to estimate BF% among adult Chinese. More studies are needed to evaluate the application of our equations in different populations.
Little is known about the potential adherence to and the effectiveness of a low-carbohydrate (LC) diet on weight loss and cardiometabolic risk factors in Chinese adults with a habitually high carbohydrate intake. In the present controlled feeding trial, fifty overweight or obese women (age 47·9 (sem 0·9) years; BMI 26·7 (sem 0·3) kg/m2) were randomly assigned to a LC non-energy-restricted diet (initial carbohydrate intake 20 g/d, with a 10 g increase weekly) or an energy-restricted (ER) diet (carbohydrate intake 156–205 g/d, ER to 5021 or 6276 kJ/d, 35 % average energy reduction) for 12 weeks. Over the intervention period, the two diets had comparable compliance (96 %) and self-reported acceptability. At week 12, carbohydrate intake in the LC and ER groups contributed to 36·1 and 51·1 % of total energy, respectively (P< 0·001). Although both diets showed similarly decreased mean body weight (LC − 5·27 (95 % CI − 6·08, − 4·46) kg; ER − 5·09 (95 % CI − 5·50, − 4·67) kg, P= 0·67) and percentage of fat mass measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (LC − 1·19 (95 % CI − 1·88, − 0·50) %; ER − 1·56 (95 % CI − 2·20, − 0·92) %, P= 0·42), participants in the LC group had greater reductions in the ratio of total cholesterol:HDL-cholesterol (P= 0·03) and also in the ratio of TAG:HDL-cholesterol (P= 0·01) than those in the ER group. The present 12-week diet trial suggested that both a LC non-energy-restricted diet and an ER diet were acceptable to Chinese women and both diets were equally effective in reducing weight and fat mass. Moreover, the LC diet showed beneficial effects on blood lipid profiles.
Elevated C-reactive protein (CRP), IL-6 and retinol-binding protein 4 (RBP4) levels are associated with insulin resistance and diabetes mellitus. Phytoestrogens (including lignans and isoflavones) may enhance the management of diabetes and are hypothesized to act through inflammation pathways. The present study explored the effects of flaxseed-derived lignan on inflammatory factors and RBP4 concentrations in type 2 diabetics, who have higher levels of these biomarkers. Seventy community-dwelling diabetic patients (twenty-six men and forty-four post-menopausal women) with mild hypercholesterolaemia completed a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over trial of supplementation with flaxseed-derived lignan capsules (360 mg/d) or placebo for 12 weeks, separated by an 8-week wash-out period. The participants maintained their habitual diets and levels of physical activity. Baseline to follow-up concentrations of CRP increased significantly within the placebo group (1·42 (sem 0·19) v. 1·96 (sem 0·22) mg/l, P < 0·001), but were comparatively unchanged in the lignan-supplemented group (1·67 (sem 0·19) v. 1·90 (sem 0·26) mg/l, P = 0·94); a significant difference was observed between treatments ( − 0·45 (95 % CI − 0·76, − 0·08) mg/l, P = 0·021). This effect was confined to women (P = 0·016), but not observed in men (P = 0·49). No between-treatment differences were found with regard to IL-6 or RBP4; though IL-6 concentrations increased significantly from baseline to follow-up in both groups (P = 0·004 and P < 0·001 following lignan and placebo treatments, respectively). The study suggests that lignan might modulate CRP levels in type 2 diabetics. These results need to be confirmed by further large clinical trials of longer duration.
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