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ARS Home » Plains Area » Houston, Texas » Children's Nutrition Research Center » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #68465


item Ellis, Kenneth

Submitted to: American Society for Clinical Nutrition
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/8/1996
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: We did cross-sectional study to assess and compare the body composition of a multiracial population of 3-22 years old using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry, a state-of-the-art technique. Te measured lean mass and bone mass in black, Hispanic and white females. We found that the black girls had more lean mass and bone mass than white or Hispanic girls. We found that the white and Hispanic girls were about the same in these two measuremehnts. We also found that the Hispanic girls had much more body fat than either the white or black females. This study provides reference data for the three ethnic groups in terms of body composition. It was the first time these parameters were measured in females at this age in these three ethnic groups. As a result of our findings, we question whether the current recommendations for dietary guidelines or choices of the Hispanic girls that might explain the fact their body fat exceeds that of the other ethnic cgroups? Or is it possible that Hispanic girls might have a predisposition to body fat above that of the other groups.

Technical Abstract: The study objective was to establish reference body composition values for a multiracial female population (ages 3-22 y) using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Results for 291 subjects (white(n=143), black(n=106), Hispanic(n=42)) are reported. Bone mineral content (BMC), areal bone mineral density (BMD), bone mineral apparent density (BMAD), lean tissue mass (LEAN), body fat mass (FAT), and percentage fatness (%FAT were examined as a function of age. BMC increased as a nonlinear function of age and height (Ht). When expressed as a power model of Ht, the constant and exponent terms were different for the black vs white, but not for the white vs Hispanic females. There were increases in BMC and LEAN with age until 15+- 2y, when a plateau was evident, independent of race. BMD, FAT and %FAT values did not reach a plateau by age 15 y, but continued to increase with age. BMAD decreased with age until 9-11 y, and then remained relatively constant. In the younger age groups, the black girls were taller and heavier than the age-matched white or Hispanic females and had more BMC and LEAN mass. The Hispanic girls were heavier than the white girls; this increase reflected higher FAT and %FAT. The linear function (r=0.963,p<0.001) that described BMC vs LEAN was independent of race. When compared with reference populations from other countries, the values for the white females in the present study were in reasonable agreement. In conclusion, reference body composition standards for young females may need to be race-specific.