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ERIC Number: EJ833254
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 44
ISSN: ISSN-1932-5037
Comparison of Body Mass Index (BMI) Categories Based on Asian and Universal Standards and Language Spoken at Home among Asian American University Students
Ng, Tiffany; McMahan, Shari; Mouttapa, Michele; Tanjasiri, Sora Park; Beam, William
American Journal of Health Education, v40 n1 p37-44 Jan-Feb 2009
Background: The World Health Organization released lower Body Mass Index (BMI) cutoff points for Asian individuals to account for increased body fat percentage (BF%) and risk of obesity-related conditions at a lower body mass index. Purpose: This preliminary study: (1) explores the impact of utilizing Asian BMI standards (compared to universal standards) on the overweight/obese categorization of Asian females and males; and (2) determines whether age, gender, acculturation, and living arrangements are associated with BMI and BF%. Methods: Data on demographic variables, height and weight, BF%, living situation, and language spoken at home were collected from 170 Asian students enrolled in a health course at a public university in California. Results: When Asian BMI cutoffs were applied, categorization of Asian males and females as normal weight decreased significantly. Language spoken at home was not significantly associated with BMI; however, acculturated females tended to have higher BMIs than non-acculturated females, while acculturated males tended to have lower BMIs than non-acculturated males. Discussion: Utilization of Asian-specific BMI cutoffs will significantly increase the reported prevalence of overweight and obesity among Asians. Acculturation to the United States may be a risk factor for overweight/obesity especially among Asian females. Translation to Health Education Practice: Asian-specific BMI cutoffs may be appropriate in clinical settings, given that overweight-obesity related conditions occur at relatively lower rates of BMI and BF% among Asians. (Contains 4 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California