An estimated 1.5 million people suffer a bone disease-related fracture every year. Most work investigating bone mineral density (BMD) focuses on post-menopausal females but a report from the Surgeon General in 2004 stated that of particular concern are men, racial and ethnic minorities, poor individuals, individuals with disabilities, and individuals living in rural areas. The purpose of this study was to examine the racial/ethnic differences in bone mineral density of young adults and to investigate any correlations with variables suggested to influence BMD. BMD was assessed at a younger age than most studies based on the assumption that osteoporosis is a pediatric disorder that manifests in old age. Whole-body BMD, percent body fat (BF), fat mass (FM), and lean mass (LM) of 103 college-aged Blacks, Whites, and Hispanics (18 – 34 years of age) were measured using a Lunar Prodigy Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry (DEXA). Blacks and Whites were taller than Hispanics. Blacks had higher BMD than Whites and Hispanics. Blacks and Whites had higher t-scores than Hispanics. Weight and LM correlated with BMD for all three groups. Height correlated with BMD for Blacks only. FM correlated with BMD for Hispanics only. In conclusion, BMD is suggested to be higher in Blacks than Whites and Hispanics. LM is suggested to be an important component of bone health. It is important to stress resistance training for building and maintaining bone health throughout life.
Wilkin, Linda D.; Sims, Tristan D.; Jackson, Matthew C.; and Haddock, Bryan L.
"Racial/Ethnic Differences in Bone Mineral Density of Young Adults,"
International Journal of Exercise Science: Vol. 3
Available at: http://digitalcommons.wku.edu/ijes/vol3/iss4/6