The association between A Body Shape Index and mortality: Results from an Australian cohort.

Research paper by Janet F JF Grant, Catherine R CR Chittleborough, Zumin Z Shi, Anne W AW Taylor

Indexed on: 02 Aug '17Published on: 02 Aug '17Published in: PloS one


It is well recognised that obesity increases the risk of premature death. A Body Shape Index (ABSI) is a formula that uses waist circumference (WC), body mass index (BMI) and height to predict risk of premature mortality, where a high score (Quartile 4) indicates that a person's WC is more than expected given their height and weight. Our study examines the association between ABSI quartiles and all-cause-, cardiovascular- and cancer-related mortality, and primary cause of death. Self-reported demographic and biomedically measured health-related risk factor and weight data was from the baseline stage of the North West Adelaide Health Study (1999-2003, n = 4056), a longitudinal cohort of Australian adults. Death-related information was obtained from the National Death Index. Primary cause of death across ABSI quartiles was examined. The association between mortality and ABSI (quartile and continuous scores) was investigated using a Cox proportional hazards survival model and adjusting for socioeconomic, and self-reported and biomedical risk factors. The proportion of all three types of mortality steadily increased from ABSI Quartile 1 through to Quartile 4. After adjusting for demographic and health-related risk factors, the risk of all-cause mortality was higher for people in ABSI Quartile 4 (HR 2.64, 95% CI 01.56-4.47), and ABSI Quartile 3 (HR 1.95, 95% CI 1.15-3.33), with a moderate association for the continuous ABSI score (HR 1.32, 95% CI 1.18-1.48). ABSI is therefore positively associated with mortality in Australian adults. Different combined measures of obesity such as the ABSI are useful in examining mortality risk.