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Cross-sectional relationship between alcohol consumption and prevalence of metabolic syndrome in Japanese men and women

A study reported in Atherosclerosis and Thrombosis aimed to clarify the relationship between alcohol intake and metabolic syndrome in Japanese men and women.
Over 11,000 Japanese female subjects were divided into non- drinkers, light (< 22 g ethanol/day) and heavy (>/= 22 ethanol/day) drinkers, and over 19,000 Japanese male subjects  were divided into non-, light (< 22 g ethanol/day), heavy (>/= 22 and < 44 g ethanol/day) and very heavy (>/= 44 g ethanol/day) drinkers. The mean level of each variable and the prevalence of each risk factor and metabolic syndrome were compared among the groups.
Results indicate that in men and women, blood pressure and HDL cholesterol tended to be higher, and hemoglobin A1c tended to be lower with increased alcohol intake. Waist circumference showed U-and V-shaped relationships, and log-converted triglyceride showed J- and V-shaped relationships with alcohol intake in men and women, respectively. The prevalence of metabolic syndrome was lowest in light drinkers in men and women and was significantly higher in very heavy drinkers than in nondrinkers in men. In men, the odds ratio vs. non-drinkers for metabolic syndrome was significantly low in light drinkers, while the odds ratio was significantly high in very heavy drinkers. In women, a significantly low odds ratio vs. non-drinkers for metabolic syndrome was obtained in light drinkers.
The authors conclude that light drinking is associated with a lower risk of metabolic syndrome in Japanese men and women, while very heavy drinking is thought to increase the risk of metabolic syndrome in Japanese men.

Source: Cross-sectional relationship between alcohol consumption and prevalence of metabolic syndrome in Japanese men and women  Wakabayashi I Journal: Journal of Atherosclerosis and Thrombosis Citation: Vol 17, No 7, 2010, pp695-704
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