Journal of Public Health Management and Practice

Savadatti, Sanghamitra S., Erin M. Bell*, Margaret A. Gates*, Akiko S. Hosler*, Recai M. Yucel*, and Ranjita Misra


Metabolic syndrome (MetS), a clustering of cardiometabolic risk factors of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, disproportionately affects Asian Indians (AIs). We examined prevalence of MetS using 3 ethnicity-specific MetS criteria among immigrant AIs in the United States. We also examined associations between MetS and health promotion behaviors.

To present MetS prevalence estimates by the 3 ethnicity-specific criteria and investigate differences in health promotion behaviors among AIs with and without MetS to highlight the critical need for lifestyle modification strategies for this population.

We analyzed data from a national cross-sectional study of 1037 AIs in the United States (2004-2006). We used the consensus criteria, International Diabetes Federation criteria, and modified criteria to estimate MetS prevalence. The Health Promotion Lifestyle Profile II scale measured health promotion behaviors. Bioclinical data (fasting blood glucose, triglyceride levels) were collected. Directed acyclic graphs and Likelihood Ratio Test assisted with model selection. Multiple imputation inference incorporated uncertainty due to missing data and made use of all available data. Adjusted multivariable logistic regression analysis tested for associations.

Out of all participants, 40.3% met the consensus criteria, 34.8% met the International Diabetes Federation criteria, and 52.5% met the modified criteria. We found no statistically significant associations between engagement in health promotion measures and the prevalence of MetS and its criteria.

Our study confirmed the high prevalence of MetS in the immigrant AI population in the United States. Our results showed that AIs with MetS did not exhibit an increased level of engagement in health promotion behaviors. We recommend continued refining of criteria for diagnosis and culturally suitable, age-appropriate strategies to increase engagement in healthier lifestyles among this high-risk population.

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* Denotes CSDA Associates, Affiliates, and Staff