Objective: To assess Tanner staging (breast and pubic hair development) and its relationship to measures of body composition, blood pressure, and fasting insulin and glucose in young black girls. Research Methods and Procedures: Subjects were 138 black girls, 8 to 12 years of age, recruited from elementary schools in low socioeconomic status neighborhoods. Exclusion criteria included the presence of any acute/chronic medical conditions. Pubertal stages were assessed by one of two pediatricians and analyzed individually, as well as with a composite index (prepubertal, pubertal/premenarcheal, or pubertal/menarcheal). Glucose and insulin were measured after a 12-hour fast. Measures of body composition included height, weight, BMI, waist and hip circumferences, fat mass, fat-free soft tissue, bone mineral density (DXA), and visceral adipose tissue (magnetic resonance imaging). Resting systolic and diastolic blood pressure were measured by Dinamap. Results: With age in the model, breast development explained significant proportions of the variance in height, weight, fat-free soft tissue, bone mineral density, and insulin. Adding pubic hair development or menarche to those models did not significantly increase the proportion of variance that was explained by breast development. Furthermore, using a composite index of pubertal staging explained a smaller proportion of the variance compared with breast development alone. Discussion: Combined with age, breast development was a better predictor of body composition and fasting insulin than was pubic hair development or a composite index of pubertal staging.
- Metabolic syndrome
- Tanner staging
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Food Science
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health