Skeletal muscle mass in prepubertal Asian children has not been examined previously. The aims of this study were to test the hypotheses that 1) prepubertal Asians have less appendicular skeletal muscle (ASM) mass compared with African-Americans and Caucasians, and 2) ASM is less in prepubertal Asian girls compared with Asian boys. ASM was estimated by using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry in healthy prepubertal girls (n = 170) and boys (n = 166). The results showed that, after adjusting for age, height, and body weight, 1) Asian girls and boys had less amounts of ASM than African-Americans (P < 0.001); 2) Asian girls had less amounts of ASM than Caucasian girls (P = 0.004); 3) there was a trend towards less ASM in Asian compared with Caucasian boys (P = 0.07); 4) and Asian girls had significantly less ASM than Asian boys (P < 0.001). This study indicates that skeletal muscle mass as a fraction of body weight is smaller in Asian compared with African-American and Caucasian children.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physiology (medical)