People who are fat around the stomach are more likely to suffer from Type 2 diabetes and coronary heart disease, researchers have found.
“People vary in their distribution of body fat — some put fat in their belly, which we call abdominal adiposity and some in their hips and thighs,” says Sekar Kathiresan, Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School in Boston.
People who are genetically likely to store belly fat have the typical apple shaped bodies. According to the findings of the new study, such individuals are most likely to suffer from Type 2 diabetes and heart disease in later life.
For the purpose of the study, researchers looked at the 48 gene variants associated with waist-to-hip ratio in around 400,000 individuals.
The researchers analysed the genomes in the subjects and found a significant increase in the incidence of Type 2 diabetes and coronary heart disease. Higher ratios were also linked with increased blood lipids, blood glucose and systolic blood pressure.
The findings of the study appear in the current issue of the journal of JAMAA.