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Background: Adiposity is increasing rapidly in China but little is known about the relevance to it of women's reproductive factors, which differ inter-generationally and from that in the West. We assess associations of adiposity with life-course reproductive factors in Chinese women. Methods: In 2004-08, the nationwide China Kadoorie Biobank recruited 303 000 women aged 30-79 (mean 50) years from 10 diverse regions. Multivariable linear regression was used to examine associations of reproductive factors (e.g. age at menarche/first birth/menopause, parity, breastfeeding and reproductive years) with measures of general [e.g. body mass index (BMI)] and central [e.g. waist circumference (WC)] adiposity in adulthood. Results: Overall, the mean BMI was 23.7 (standard deviation 3.3) kg/m 2 , mean age at menarche was 15 (2) years and nearly all had given birth (99%) and breastfed children (98%). Adiposity was associated inversely with age at menarche and at first birth, with 0.19 and 0.05 kg/m 2 lower BMI and 0.38 and 0.12 cm lower WC per 1-year delay respectively ( P  

Original publication




Journal article


Int J Epidemiol

Publication Date





502 - 512


Chinese, adiposity, cross-sectional studies, reproductive factors, women, Adiposity, Adult, Aged, Biological Specimen Banks, Body Mass Index, Breast Feeding, China, Cross-Sectional Studies, Female, Humans, Linear Models, Menarche, Menopause, Middle Aged, Multivariate Analysis, Obesity, Parity, Waist Circumference