William Jagust, MD; Danielle Harvey, PhD; Dan Mungas, PhD; Mary Haan, DrPH
Background: Central adiposity as an indicator of visceral fat is linked to vascular and metabolic factors that in turn are related to cognitive decline and dementia.
Objective: To determine whether larger waist-hip ratio (WHR) is associated with structural brain changes that underlie cognitive decline and dementia.
Design: Cross-sectional analysis of an epidemiologic cohort study of cognitive and functional decline (Sacramento Area
Latino Study on Aging).
Setting: California Central Valley.
Participants: A total of 112 individuals selected from an ongoing cohort study of 1789 older Latino individuals. Baseline anthropomorphic measures (WHR) and measurements of fasting blood glucose, cholesterol, and insulin levels and blood pressure were obtained.
Main Outcome Measures: Baseline magnetic resonance images were analyzed quantitatively to determine the hippocampal volumes in the right and left hemispheres and rated for the percentage of white matter hyperintensities.
Results: Greater WHR (P=.02) and older age (P