Your risk of cardiometabolic diseases can be measured by how much fat you have on your body, however the location of fat, as well as your sex, might play a bigger role, according to findings presented at the Radiological Society of North America Annual Meeting.
Researchers analyzed 200 participants---half women, half men. They found that, compared to men, women had a higher percentage of fat mass and lower lean mass, as well as more femoral subcutaneous adipose tissue (which is the fat located beneath the skin). Men had more muscle mass and more visceral tissue (the tissue that surrounds internal organs).
Not only did men have higher cardiometabolic risk, but women who had higher levels of visceral adipose tissue were also at higher risk.
In other words, while it's not the only determining factor, the higher percentage of fat you have surrounding your internal organs---(NOT necessarily the fat you can physically pinch on your stomach) can increase your risk of developing a cardiometabolic disease.
When you receive a DEXA scan at our Performance Medicine Institute, you'll receive results that tell you exactly where your body fat and lean mass is located, including the exact percentage of visceral adipose tissue and subcutaneous adipose tissue you have. Based on your results, our performance experts can analyze your numbers and tell you if you are at high or low risk for cardiometabolic disease, and help create a plan on how to decrease your risk.