`Body shape index` more accurate predictor of mortality than `body mass index`

Updated: Feb 25, 2014, 15:03 PM IST

Zee Media Bureau

Washington: Beware if you have excess belly fat as that might put you in danger.

A new study reveals that “body shape index” is a more accurate predictor of mortality than “body mass index” (BMI).

Nir Krakauer, an assistant professor of civil engineering in City College of New York's Grove School of Engineering, and his father, Jesse Krakauer, MD, developed a new method- A Body Shape Index (ABSI) in 2012- to determine the risk specifically associated with abdominal obesity.

Now, a follow-up study, published on February 20 by the online journal PLOS ONE, supports the father-son duo technique and confirmed that A Body Shape Index (ABSI) is a more effective predictor of mortality than body mass index, the most common measure used to define obesity.

The results tracked closely with the earlier study, which used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), conducted in the US between 1999 and 2004.

This provides stronger evidence that ABSI is a valid indicator of the risk of premature death across different populations.

The study also showed that unlike BMI, ABSI incorporates waist circumference into its calculations, which helps account for the increased health risks of carrying excess weight in the lower abdomen.

Also, because the data came from two surveys seven years apart, the researchers were able to assess the effect of change in ABSI on mortality.

The researchers found an increase in ABSI correlated with increased risk of death, and that the more recent ABSI measurement was a more reliable predictor.

With Agency Inputs