Cadernos de Saúde Pública
On-line version ISSN 1678-4464Print version ISSN 0102-311X
GUGELMIN, Silvia Angela and SANTOS, Ricardo Ventura. Use of Body Mass Index to evaluate the nutritional status of Xavánte Indigenous adults, Sangradouro-Volta Grande, Mato Grosso State, Central Brazil. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2006, vol.22, n.9, pp.1865-1872. ISSN 1678-4464. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-311X2006000900017.
This study evaluates the relationship between Body Mass Index (BMI) and anthropometric measurements in Xavánte adults on the Sangradouro-Volta Grande Indian Reservation, Mato Grosso State, Central Brazil. The objective was to analyze the use of BMI as an indicator of nutritional status in this specific population. Fieldwork was conducted in January-February 1999. Data include body mass, height, arm, hip, and waist circumference, and triceps skinfold of 128 adults over 20 years of age. The results indicate high correlations (r > 0.80) between BMI and body mass and waist and mid upper arm circumference for both sexes. For women, fat arm area and total arm area were also highly correlated with BMI, while for men hip circumference and total arm area showed a high correlation with BMI. The results suggest that high BMI values are related to excess fat among the Xavánte. It is important to monitor changes in the nutritional status of indigenous peoples in Brazil, since there is evidence that such populations are undergoing rapid processes of nutritional transition.
Keywords : South American Indians; Obesity; Nutritional Status; Anthropometry.