September 1, 1997

The insulin resistance syndrome in native Hawaiians. Native Hawaiian Health Research (NHHR) Project

Mau MK, Grandinetti A, Arakaki RF, Chang HK, Kinney EK, Curb JD

Pending PubMed Central Publication
Diabetes Care

OBJECTIVE:  To investigate whether fasting hyperinsulinemia is associated with a clustering of cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors, manifesting as the insulin resistance syndrome (IRS), in a population of native Hawaiians.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS:  A total of 574 native Hawaiians > or = 30 years of age were examined for blood pressure, waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), BMI, oral glucose tolerance, and fasting lipid, insulin, and C-peptide concentrations. All statistical analyses (n = 384) excluded 190 individuals who had NIDDM or who were taking hypertension medication. Using logistic regression analysis, fasting insulin and C-peptide levels were compared with CVD risk factors (glucose intolerance, hypertension, central adiposity, elevated triglyceride levels, and low HDL cholesterol levels) after adjusting for age and obesity.

RESULTS:  Sixty-six percent of native Hawaiians were overweight or obese, and 70% were found to have central adiposity. Fasting insulin concentrations were correlated with BMI, WHR, blood pressure, and triglyceride, HDL cholesterol, and glucose concentrations. Fasting insulin was also significantly associated with an increasing number of CVD risk factors in each participant (P < 0.001). Fasting insulin and C-peptide concentrations were independently associated with glucose intolerance, high triglyceride levels, and low HDL cholesterol levels. However, only fasting C-peptide concentrations were independently associated with hypertension and central adiposity. Apparent differences in the correlates of fasting insulin and C-peptide may be related to multiple factors and warrant further evaluation.

CONCLUSIONS:  This study provides cross-sectional data confirming the existence of the IRS in native Hawaiians. However, further longitudinal studies are needed to examine the relationship of insulin resistance and/or surrogate markers to increased rates of NIDDM and CVD mortality in native Hawaiians.

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