Smoking status, the menopausal transition, and metabolic syndrome in women.Menopause. 2012 Feb; 19(2):194-201.M
Data on the relationship between tobacco use and metabolic risk among women with regard to their menopause status are scarce. This study assessed the prevalence of metabolic disorders in relation to smoking status in premenopausal and postmenopausal women.
A cross-sectional analysis of 7,462 randomly selected women aged 20 to 74 years who are participating in the WOBASZ (Polish National Multicentre Health Survey) was carried out. Lifestyle and menopause status details were collected via an interviewer-administered questionnaire. Weight, height, waist circumference, blood pressure, fasting plasma glucose, triglycerides, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) levels were measured by standard methods. Metabolic syndrome (MetS) was defined according to the International Diabetes Federation criteria.
The prevalence of MetS was 3.3-fold higher among postmenopausal than premenopausal women. Regardless of menopause status, the prevalence of central obesity was significantly higher among never and past smokers versus current smokers (P < 0.001). Past smoking was associated with a significantly higher probability of elevated blood pressure, fasting plasma glucose, and MetS (P < 0.05). However, premenopausal never and past smokers had a substantially lower prevalence of decreased HDL-C than did current smokers. Among postmenopausal nonsmoking women, high levels of leisure time and commuting physical activity were associated with a reduced likelihood of MetS (P < 0.01). Making an additional adjustment for calorie consumption did not substantially influence the results.
Except for HDL-C level, not smoking is associated with an unfavorable metabolic profile in women, regardless of menopause status. High level of physical activity may reduce the prevalence of MetS among never and past smokers after the menopausal transition.