Anthropometric predictors of hypertension in afro-descendant women

Bruna Merten Padilha, Alcides da Silva Diniz, Haroldo da Silva Ferreira, Marília Tokiko Oliveira Tomiya, Poliana Coelho Cabral


***Anthropometric predictors of hypertension in afro-descendant women***

AIMS: To determine the association between anthropometric parameters and systemic arterial hypertension and to identify the best anthropometrics predictors of this disease in afro-descendant women from remaining quilombo communities.

METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted with quilombola women from Alagoas State. Blood pressure, anthropometric parameters (body mass index, waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, waist-to-height ratio, conicity index, body fat), sociodemographic variables, smoking and parity were investigated. The associations between anthropometric parameters and systemic arterial hypertension were investigated using Poisson regression with robust variance adjustment. The ability of these parameters to predict the presence of systemic arterial hypertension was analyzed using Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) curves.

RESULTS: A total of 1,553 women, aged between 20 and 59 years, were evaluated. The prevalence of systemic arterial hypertension was 35.8% and that of overweight was 48.5%. The presence of systemic arterial hypertension was associated with body mass index, waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, waist-to-height ratio, and body fat, even after adjusting for age, socioeconomic class, and smoking status. From the ROC curves, the following cutoff points were found: body mass index ≥26.2 kg/m², waist circumference ≥81.6 cm, waist-to-hip ratio ≥0.84, waist-to-height ratio ≥0.54, conicity index ≥1.20 and body fat ≥35.4%. Body fat, waist-to-hip ratio and waist-to-waist ratio were equally able to predict systemic arterial hypertension.

CONCLUSIONS: All indicators of global obesity and those of central obesity, except for the conicity index, were associated with systemic arterial hypertension in this sample of Afro-descendant quilombola women. Percentage of body fat, waist-to-hip ratio and waist-to-height ratio were the best anthropometric predictors of systemic arterial hypertension. These measures had equal, albeit low, discriminatory power for the presence of systemic arterial hypertension in this population.


African-Americans; ethnicity and health; abdominal fat; obesity; arterial pressure; ROC curve.


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