Although fish consumption has inversely been associated with several metabolic abnormalities, limited and inconsistent data have reported the relationship between fish consumption and metabolic syndrome. The aim of this study was to identify the association between fish consumption and metabolic syndrome and its components.
In a cross-sectional study conducted on 420 Iranian female adults, usual fish consumption was assessed using a dish-based semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire (FFQ). Fasting blood samples were taken for biochemical assessment. Anthropometric and blood pressure measurements were carried out according to standard protocols. Metabolic syndrome was defined based on the National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III guidelines. Multivariate logistic regression adjusted for lifestyle and dietary variables was applied to assess fish-metabolic syndrome association.
The prevalence of metabolic syndrome was 8.2%. Mean daily intake of fish was 14.4 g per day. Individuals in the highest tertile of fish intake were 65% less likely to have the metabolic syndrome than those in the lowest tertile (odds ratio: 0.35; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.14-0.88). Controlling for potential confounders and dietary variables strengthened this association (odds ratio: 0.05; 95% CI: 0.004-0.64). After adjustment for potential cofounders, high fish intake was inversely associated with hypertriglyceridemia (odds ratio: 0.11; 95% CI: 0.01-0.85), low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (odds ratio: 0.57; 95% CI: 0.19-0.89) and elevated blood pressure (odds ratio: 0.23; 95% CI: 0.14-0.89).
We found that increased fish intake was independently related to the lower odds of metabolic syndrome and its features. Further prospective investigations are warranted to confirm this association.