The objective of this study was to determine the effect of body fat distribution and hyperinsulinemia on the occurrence of ovulation. Fifty-six women (20–35 years old) either with overweight or obesity (body mass index ≥25) were studied. They were classified in two groups according to waist/hip ratio (WHR); one with predominance of adiposity in the upper body segment (n = 29, WHR >0.85) and the other with predominant adiposity in the lower body segment (n = 27, WHR ≤0.85). Basal body temperature and serum progesterone were determined in each cycle during 6 months. Serum insulin levels were measured at baseline and 30, 60, 90, 120 and 180 min after a 75-gram oral glucose load. The mean insulin values in response to oral glucose load in patients with upper body segment obesity were significantly higher than those corresponding to women with lower body segment obesity. Furthermore, the ratio between ovulated cycles and all the cycles studied in patients with upper body segment obesity was significantly lower than that observed in patients with lower body segment obesity. Upper body obesity seems to affect the ovulatory process and this may be related to the presence of hyperinsulinemia.

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