Age- and sex-related differences in body composition in healthy subjects aged 18 to 82 years

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Significant changes in body composition are known to occur with aging. The aim of the present study was to provide a normative reference of body composition and to investigate age and sex-related differences in healthy subjects by multifrequency bioelectrical impedance analyzer (BIA).A cross-sectional study was conducted on a sample of 3451 healthy Chinese adults, 1611 males and 1840 females. The volunteers were enrolled in 5 different age bands (18–30, 31–40, 41–50, 51–60, 60+). All subjects were measured for weight and height and submitted to BIA, to determine body composition. Body composition measures accounted for differences between men and women.A decrease in fat-free mass and increase in percent body fat was observed with aging, although the phenomenon was proved to be attenuated in women. The central and visceral redistribution of fat mass was also shown along lifetime.This study is a report on body composition of healthy subjects, to be used as an important data for future investigations and differences between nationalities and countries.

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