Inverse relationship between "a body shape index" (ABSI) and fat-free mass in women and men: Insights into mechanisms of sarcopenic obesity.

Research paper by Gianni G Biolo, Filippo Giorgio FG Di Girolamo, Andrea A Breglia, Massimiliano M Chiuc, Valeria V Baglio, Pierandrea P Vinci, Gabriele G Toigo, Lucio L Lucchin, Mihaela M Jurdana, Zala J ZJ Pražnikar, Ana A Petelin, Sara S Mazzucco, Roberta R Situlin

Indexed on: 13 May '14Published on: 13 May '14Published in: Clinical Nutrition


Sarcopenic obesity may be defined by a high fat to fat-free mass (FM/FFM) ratio. Skeletal muscle may be negatively influenced by the pro-inflammatory milieu associated with visceral fat, while the loading effect induced by a heavier body mass index (BMI) may enhance muscle anabolism. Recently, a new anthropometric measure based on waist circumference (A Body Shape Index, ABSI) was developed. In this study we have assessed the predictive power of ABSI on the FFM index (FFMI), a surrogate marker of lean mass.Standard anthropometric parameters and ABSI as well as body composition data (fat and fat-free mass determined by bioelectrical impedance analysis) were assessed in 111 female and 89 male overweight/obese subjects, with no clinically significant co-morbidities. Groups with higher- or lower-ABSI were identified according to median values of this index.In women and men, ABSI did not correlate with BMI, while multiple linear regression indicated that BMI (β-coefficients: 0.62 and 0.77, respectively) and ABSI (β-coefficients: -0.26 and -0.22, respectively) independently predicted FFMI (multiple R: 0.72 and 0.83, respectively, P < 0.001). Men and women with lower-ABSI exhibited significantly greater FFMI than the higher-ABSI groups for comparable values of BMI. In men, ABSI was correlated positively with C-reactive protein (CRP) (R = 0.30; P < 0.05) and negatively with the reciprocal of insulin (R = 0.28; P < 0.05), an index of insulin sensitivity. FM/FFM ratio significantly (P < 0.01) correlated with CRP (R = 0.31) in women only.ABSI, a recently introduced marker of abdominal adiposity, may contribute to define the risk of sarcopenia in overweight/obese individuals.