High prevalence of cardiometabolic risk factors amongst young adults in the United Arab Emirates: the UAE Healthy Future Study.
BACKGROUND: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in the world. In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), it accounts for 40% of mortality. CVD is caused by multiple cardiometabolic risk factors (CRFs) including obesity, dysglycemia, dyslipidemia, hypertension and central obesity. However, there are limited studies focusing on the CVD risk burden among young Emirati adults. This study investigates the burden of CRFs in a sample of young Emiratis, and estimates the distribution in relation to sociodemographic and behavioral determinants. METHODS: Data was used from the baseline data of the UAE Healthy Future Study volunteers. The study participants were aged 18 to 40 years. The study analysis was based on self-reported questionnaires, anthropometric and blood pressure measurements, as well as blood analysis. RESULTS: A total of 5167 participants were included in the analysis; 62% were males and the mean age of the sample was 25.7 years. The age-adjusted prevalence was 26.5% for obesity, 11.7% for dysglycemia, 62.7% for dyslipidemia, 22.4% for hypertension and 22.5% for central obesity. The CRFs were distributed differently when compared within social and behavioral groups. For example, obesity, dyslipidemia and central obesity in men were found higher among smokers than non-smokers (p < 0.05). And among women with lower education, all CRFs were reported significantly higher than those with higher education, except for hypertension. Most CRFs were significantly higher among men and women with positive family history of common non-communicable diseases. CONCLUSIONS: CRFs are highly prevalent in the young Emirati adults of the UAE Healthy Future Study. The difference in CRF distribution among social and behavioral groups can be taken into account to target group-specific prevention measures.