MetS and Ethnicity

MetS and Ethnicity 

  • In sharp contrast, at a given level of BMI, blacks have less visceral fat compared with whites. 1 Despite a higher BMI among blacks overall, the waist circumference (WC) among black men is 4 cm smaller than in white men but 5 cm larger in black women compared with white women. 2
  • The prevalence of MS varies by gender and ethnicity, age, BMI and the criteria used especially, the WC.
  • Black males were about one-half as likely as white males to meet criteria for metabolic syndrome (MS), while black and Mexican-American females were about 1.5 times as likely as white females to meet the criteria. 3
  • Among Koreans without diabetes, the prevalence of metabolic syndrome increase from 19%  to 29% by using Asian modified NCEP criteria.4


1. Conway JM, Yanovski SZ, Avila NA, Hubbard VS. Visceral adipose tissue differences in black and white women. Am J Clin Nutr. 1995;61(4):765-771.

2. Park YW, Zhu S, Palaniappan L, Heshka S, Carnethon MR, Heymsfield SB. The Metabolic Syndrome: Prevalence and Associated Risk Factor Findings in the US Population From the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1988-1994. Arch Intern Med. 2003;163(4):427-436.

3. Ervin RB. Prevalence of metabolic syndrome among adults 20 years of age and over, by sex, age, race and ethnicity, and body mass index: United States, 2003-2006. Natl Health Stat Report. May 5 2009(13):1-7.

4. Moon JY, Park S, Rhee JH, et al. The applicability of the Asian modified criteria of the metabolic syndrome in the Korean population. Int J Cardiol. Jan 2 2007;114(1):83-89.

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