Serum lipids of Greenland Inuit in relation to Inuit genetic heritage, westernisation and migration

P. Bjerregaard*, M. E. Jørgensen, K. Borch-Johnsen

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde

    Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftArtikelForskningpeer review


    Background: The reputed low prevalence of cardiovascular disease among the Inuit has recently been challenged. Studies have shown total cholesterol among the Inuit to differ little from that of western populations and the association between cholesterol and atherosclerosis to be inconsistent. Methods: We studied serum lipids in a population survey among 2114 Inuit living in Denmark or in West Greenland. Blood tests were supplemented by structured interviews, anthropometry and measurements of blood pressure. Findings: Compared with the general population of Denmark, total cholesterol was higher among Inuit women, while HDL-cholesterol was higher among Inuit men. Triglyceride was lower among Inuit of both sexes. Cholesterol and triglyceride varied according to westernisation, diet, alcohol consumption and smoking. In a multivariate analysis, serum lipids also differed significantly between pure and genetically mixed Inuit: HDL-cholesterol was higher among the genetically pure Inuit, while among men triglyceride was lower and among women total and LDL-cholesterol were higher. Interpretation: Among the Inuit, serum lipids are significantly associated with westernisation and genetic heritage. The effect of westernisation is to some extent due to dietary changes. From a cardiovascular health point of view, westernisation within Greenland is associated with unfavourable lipid changes while migration to Denmark is associated with favourable lipid changes.

    Sider (fra-til)391-398
    Antal sider8
    Udgave nummer2
    StatusUdgivet - jun. 2004


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