AIMS: Studies of blood pressure among various Inuit (Eskimo) populations in the Arctic have given inconsistent results. Most studies reported lower blood pressure among the Inuit as compared with the predominantly white national populations. This has been attributed to traditional subsistence practices and lifestyle. This study compared the blood pressure among the major Inuit population groups with other populations and examined the associations with factors like age, gender, obesity and smoking. METHODS: The study comprised four Inuit populations from Alaska, Canada, and Greenland with participation rates ranging from 51% to 73%. In a cross-sectional design, 2,509 randomly selected adults from 31 villages were examined. Blood pressure, anthropometric measurements, smoking, and medication were recorded. RESULTS: Mean systolic blood pressures ranged from 116 to 124 mm Hg among men and 110 to 118 among women in the four populations. Mean diastolic blood pressures ranged from 75 to 78 mm Hg among men and from 71 to 73 among women. Systolic blood pressure increased with age. Male gender, obesity, being a non-smoker, and being on anti-hypertensive treatment were associated with high systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Adjusted for age, body mass index, smoking, and anti-hypertensive treatment, blood pressure differed among the populations (p
Secular trends in skinfold thicknesses and body fat distribution were examined in the adult Inuit of Igloolik, N.W.T. through surveys conducted in 1969/70, 1979/80 and 1989/93. Findings were compared with the nGanasan population of Volochanka (Taimir peninsula, Siberia), who were examined in 1992/3. The skinfold readings of the Inuit have increased over the two decades of observation. Currently, the young male Inuit and nGanasan remain relatively thin, but older Inuit men and the women of both populations are now quite obese relative to subjects from Southern Canada. The male Inuit have also developed a centripetal, coronary-prone pattern of fat distribution, with subscapular/triceps skinfold ratios that now exceed averages for southern Canada. The majority of both Inuit and nGanasan are current smokers and many fail to meet minimal standards of aerobic performance. Plasma cholesterol levels are still not very high, but a substantial proportion of the nGanasan are affected by hypertension; their source of animal protein is reindeer meat rather than the marine mammals eaten in Igloolik. Alcohol consumption is also higher in Volochanka than in Igloolik. Action is needed to control smoking, reduce body fat content and increase physical activity if circumpolar populations are not to experience an epidemic of cardiovascular disease.
BACKGROUND: The Inuit are commonly portrayed to be somehow protected from cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) through their traditional lifestyle and diet. However, actual sociocultural transition and related major, modifiable risk factors have scarcely been quantified in the Inuit population. Such knowledge is extremely valuable in terms of public health intervention.METHODS: A total of 887 Inuit residents from Nunavik, Quebec, participated in a cohort study. The estimates presented were derived from anthropometric and biological measurements gathered at the time of recruitment and enhanced by information collected in the medical file of each participant. All estimates were corrected for a complex sampling strategy and bootstrapped to ensure the representativeness of the general Nunavik population.RESULTS: Overall, 19% of Inuit had a disease of the circulatory system according to the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, 10th revision. Among all disorders, peripheral circulatory system disease was the most prevalent (9%). Prevalences of ischemic heart disease and cerebrovascular disease were of similar magnitude (2.5%). No significant difference in disease prevalence was noted between sexes. The major modifiable CVD risk factors were smoking (84%), obesity (49%) (body mass index of greater than 30 kgm2) and elevated blood pressure (13085 mmHg or greater) (18%). Prevalences were globally higher among women.CONCLUSION: The current belief that the Inuit are protected from CVD is seriously questioned by the results of the present study. Considering the extremely high prevalence of CVD risk factors, a population-based intervention reinforced for women is urgently needed to reduce their risk.
Hypertension is a major modifiable cardiovascular risk factor. The present longitudinal study aimed to examine the best combination of childhood physical and environmental factors to predict adult hypertension and furthermore whether newly identified genetic variants for blood pressure increase the prediction of adult hypertension.
The study cohort included 2625 individuals from the Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study who were followed up for 21 to 27 years since baseline (1980; age, 3-18 years). In addition to dietary factors and biomarkers related to blood pressure, we examined whether a genetic risk score based on 29 newly identified single-nucleotide polymorphisms enhances the prediction of adult hypertension. Hypertension in adulthood was defined as systolic blood pressure = 130 mm Hg and/or diastolic blood pressure = 85 mm Hg or medication for the condition. Independent childhood risk factors for adult hypertension included the individual's own blood pressure (P
The authors report the rates of obesity, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, smoking, and macrovascular and microvascular complications among Mohawks of Kahnawake, PQ, who have non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. The data were derived from a study comparing rates of macrovascular and microvascular complications among the diabetic subjects and a nondiabetic group matched for age and sex. The data for both groups were collected by means of chart review, interview and body measurement. There were no important differences between the male and female diabetic subjects. Both sexes had high levels of obesity, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia and diabetic complications. A total of 86% of the diabetic subjects were obese; the rate was also very high (74%) among the nondiabetic subjects. The mean age at onset of diabetes, 59 years, was 10 years higher than that observed in Oneida Iroquois of Ontario. The rates of macrovascular disease among the diabetic subjects were higher than those found among Cree/Ojibwa in Ontario and Manitoba. Our findings add to the knowledge of non-insulin-dependent diabetes in North American Indians in Canada and show that there are differences between our Mohawk subjects and diabetic people of other native communities.
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OBJECTIVE: To investigate frequency of food intake, body weight, and glucose intolerance in Alaska Natives. DESIGN: Height, weight, and random blood glucose levels were measured and a frequency-of-food-intake questionnaire was obtained. This questionnaire classified persons as consumers of indigenous foods or nonindigenous foods within three food groups. Those with a random blood glucose measurement > or = 6.72 mmol/L received an oral glucose tolerance test. SETTING: Community screening in 15 villages in Alaska. SUBJECTS: Nutrition screenings were done for 1,124 Alaska Native residents aged 20 years or older. An oral glucose tolerance test was done for 202 subjects. OUTCOMES MEASURED: Subjects were classified as consumers of indigenous or nonindigenous foods within three food groups. A diagnosis of non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) was made on the basis of World Health Organization criteria. A determination of overweight was made on the basis of National Center for Health Statistics criteria. STATISTICAL ANALYSIS: A chi 2 test with Yates correction, t test, and linear regression, with two-sided P values. RESULTS: Athabascan Indians had twice the rate of NIDDM as Yup'ik Eskimos with significantly higher frequency of nonindigenous food intake, plus lower frequency of indigenous carbohydrate and fat intake. Subjects or = 60 years old. Persons who had glucose intolerance reported significantly greater consumption of nonindigenous protein and less seal oil. Incidence of overweight was significantly higher than was found 25 years ago. Participants with glucose intolerance were significantly more overweight than others. CONCLUSION: A pattern of increased frequency of nonindigenous protein, low-nutrient-density carbohydrate, and fat intake with less indigenous carbohydrate and fat consumption was found in subjects
We investigated the influence of obesity on joint pain and function in Asians as compared to Caucasians with degenerative hip and knee arthritis.
We surveyed 1983 patients (1876 Caucasians and 107 Asians) undergoing primary hip or knee replacement surgery. Relevant covariates including demographic data, body mass index (BMI), sex, comorbidities, education, and ethnicity were recorded. Pain and joint functional status were assessed at baseline and at 1-year followup with the Western Ontario and McMaster University Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) pain and function scores.
Asian patients presented for surgery at a significantly younger age and lower mean BMI, and reported greater pain and dysfunction than Caucasian patients. Multivariate linear regression modeling showed that for every level of BMI, Asian patients reported greater levels of joint pain and dysfunction. At a BMI of 30 kg/m2, this translated to a 16.6% higher WOMAC score (p
Genetic association studies using case-control designs are susceptible to false-positive and false-negative results if there are differences in genetic ancestry between cases and controls. We measured genetic ancestry among Latinas in a population-based case-control study of breast cancer and tested the association between ancestry and known breast cancer risk factors. We reasoned that if genetic ancestry is associated with known breast cancer risk factors, then the results of genetic association studies would be confounded.
We used 44 ancestry informative markers to estimate individuals' genetic ancestry in 563 Latina participants. To test whether ancestry is a predictor of hormone therapy use, parity, and body mass index (BMI), we used multivariate logistic regression models to estimate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI) associated with a 25% increase in Indigenous American ancestry, adjusting for age, education, and the participant's and grandparents' place of birth.
Hormone therapy use was significantly less common among women with higher Indigenous American ancestry (OR, 0.78; 95% CI, 0.63-0.96). Higher Indigenous American ancestry was also significantly associated with overweight (BMI, 25-29.9 versus or =30 versus
Because of their recent adoption of a Westernized lifestyle, an increased risk of developing hypertension (HTN) is suspected among Inuit populations. This study aimed to assess the exact prevalence of HTN in Nunavik Inuit and to examine its association with other major risk factors of cardiovascular disease.
A cross-sectional population-based study.
We analysed biological and anthropometric data and the medical history of 832 Inuit.
The overall prevalence of HTN (=140/90 mmHg or the use of medication) was 19% with no gender difference. Obesity (body mass index [BMI] =30 kg/m(2)) was the highest prevalent cardiovascular risk factor (23%), and was significantly associated with HTN (OR for BMI