Kee Chee Cheong, Ahmad F Yusoff, Sumarni M Ghazali, Kuang H Lim, Sharmini Selvarajah, Jamaiyah Haniff, Geok L Khor, Suzana Shahar, Jamalludin Abd Rahman, Ahmad A Zainuddin and Amal N Mustafa (2013). Optimal BMI cut-off values for predicting diabetes, hypertension and hypercholesterolaemia in a multi-ethnic population. Public Health Nutrition 16(3):453-459
Objective To determine the optimal cut-offs of BMI for Malaysian adults.
Design Population-based, cross-sectional study. Receiver operating characteristic curves were used to determine the cut-off values of BMI with optimum sensitivity and specificity for the detection of three cardiovascular risk factors: diabetes mellitus, hypertension and hypercholesterolaemia. Gender-specific logistic regression analyses were used to examine the association between BMI and these cardiovascular risk factors.
Setting All fourteen states in Malaysia.
Subjects Malaysian adults aged ≥18 years (n 32 703) who participated in the Third National Health and Morbidity Survey in 2006.
Results The optimal BMI cut-off value for predicting the presence of diabetes mellitus, hypertension, hypercholesterolaemia or at least one of these cardiovascular risk factors varied from 23·3 to 24·1 kg/m2 for men and from 24·0 to 25·4 kg/m2 for women. In men and women, the odds ratio for having diabetes mellitus, hypertension, hypercholesterolaemia or at least one cardiovascular risk factor increased significantly as BMI cut-off point increased.
Conclusions Our findings indicate that BMI cut-offs of 23·0 kg/m2 in men and 24·0 kg/m2 in women are appropriate for classification of overweight. We suggest that these cut-offs can be used by health professionals to identify individuals for cardiovascular risk screening and weight management programmes.