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Body composition in Indian children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes

Studies suggest that children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes (T1DM) have suboptimal body composition with higher fat mass and lower bone mass. Aim of our study was to compare body composition of Indian children with type 1 diabetes with age gender matched healthy controls.

In a cross-sectional study, body composition parameters were measured by DXA (Lunar DPX PRO, Total Body Densitometer) in 160 (74 boys) children with T1DM (attending type 1 diabetes clinic) and age gender matched healthy controls. Z scores for bone mineral content (TBBMC) for age, bone area for age (TBBA), TBBMC for TBBA, TBBA for height, lean body mass (LBM) for height, TBBMC for LBM[1] and fat and lean mass [2] were computed using Indian reference data. Anthropometry and tanner staging (TS) was assessed for all children. The height (HAZ), weight (WAZ) and BMI (BAZ) were converted to Z scores using contemporary Indian references [3].

Mean ages of boys and girls were 11.4±3.3y and 10.9±3.4y respectively. For both genders HAZ (boys -0.5 vs 0.3, girls -0.5 vs 0.1) and WAZ (boys -0.6 vs 0.0 and girls -0.5 vs -0.1) were significantly lower in diabetics, though BAZ scores were comparable. Similarly, mean Z scores were significantly lower for fat mass (boys -0.1 vs 0.2, girls -0.1 vs 0.1) and higher for lean mass (boys -0.4 vs -1.1, girls -0.3 vs -0.6) in diabetics for both genders. Diabetic boys and girls had lower android fat percent (boys 20 vs 25, girls 28 vs 32, P<0.05) when compared with controls. Mean Z scores for bone parameters showed TBBA for age (boys -0.1 vs 0.5, girls -0.1 vs 0.3), TBBMC for age (boys -0.1 vs 0.6, girls -0.1 vs 0.3) and TBBMC for LBM (boys -0.4 vs 0.0, girls -0.5 vs -0.2) were significantly lower in diabetics while all other bone parameters were comparable.

Indian children with type 1 diabetes had lower fat mass (including android fat) and higher muscle mass than controls; however, diabetics need special attention to optimize their bone health.


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This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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Khadilkar, V., Parthasarathy, L., Khadilkar, A. et al. Body composition in Indian children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes. Int J Pediatr Endocrinol 2015 (Suppl 1), P18 (2015).

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