Association of cortisol and the metabolic syndrome in Korean men and women.
Obesity and the metabolic syndrome are closely related and have become increasingly prevalent in Korea. The cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors comprising the metabolic syndrome have previously been associated with increased hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPAA) activity, but the associations have not been extensively examined in non-Caucasian populations. The aim of the present study was to investigate the relationships between cortisol, adiposity and the metabolic syndrome in a Korean population. A total of 1,881 adults participated in the study between January 2001 and February 2008. Sociodemographic data were assessed by questionnaires. Body composition, clinic blood pressures as well as metabolic variables including glucose, insulin, and lipid profile were assessed and analyzed in relation to cortisol levels. Mean age of the participants was 58.7 ± 10.8 yr. Higher levels of cortisol was associated with elevated blood pressure, fasting glucose and total cholesterol in men, and between cortisol and systolic blood pressure, fasting glucose and total cholesterol in women. There was an increased risk for the metabolic syndrome associated with higher cortisol levels in both men (P < 0.001) and women (P = 0.040) adjusting for age and body mass index. Higher cortisol levels are associated with several CVD risk factors and the metabolic syndrome, independent of overall of adiposity level, in Korean men and women.
Park, SB; Blumenthal, JA; Lee, SY; Georgiades, A
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