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Clin Auton Res. 1995 Oct;5(5):261-6.

The relationship between heart rate variability and measures of body habitus.

Author information

1
Division of Neurology, Deaconess Hospital, Boston, MA 02215, USA.

Abstract

There is a well-recognized relationship between autonomic nervous system function and body habitus although few studies have addressed the role of the parasympathetic nervous system. A decrease in parasympathetic nervous-system-mediated heart rate variability in obesity may in part explain the mortality and morbidity that are associated with the obese state. We used multiple linear regression techniques to explore the relationship between measures of heart rate variability and anthropometric indices in 597 male participants in the Normative Aging Study. After adjustment for age and log10 heart rate, weight and body mass index were significant predictors of both the expiratory to inspiratory ratio (E/I ratio) and the difference between maximum and minimum heart rate (HRMax-Min). The abdomen-to-hip ratio and percentage body fat were not significant predictors of measures of heart rate variability. A one standard deviation change in the anthropometric index (weight, body mass index) resulted in a decrease in the E/I ratio of 0.010-0.014 and a decrease in the HRMax-Min of 0.486-0.715 beats/min. A change in the anthropometric index across the distribution (5-95 percentile) resulted in a decrease in the E/I ratio of 0.032-0.037 and a decrease in the HRMax-Min of 1.56-2.39 beats/min. These results indicate that heart rate variability and overall body size are correlated. This association could in part explain the mortality and morbidity that is associated with the obese state.

PMID:
8563458
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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