Effects of excessive ethanol consumption on the diagnosis of the metabolic syndrome using its clinical diagnostic criteria

Hirokazu Yokoyama, Hirose Hiroshi, Hideki Ohgo, Toshifumi Hibi, Ikuo Saito

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


Objects: Various morbid conditions constituting the metabolic syndrome could be also caused by excessive ethanol consumption. Thus, it is conceivable that excessive ethanol consumption may affect the diagnosis of the metabolic syndrome using its current diagnostic criteria. Here, we investigated this. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study involving 2,130 Japanese man subjects aged 20 to 65 was performed. Results: The rate of subjects judged to have metabolic syndrome using its diagnostic criteria for Japanese was 15.7%. However, the prevalence was significantly higher in excessive drinkers who consume more than 20 grams of ethanol per day (n=473, 22.0%) than average drinkers (n=1,657, 13.9%, χ2=18.0, p<0.0001). The rate of subjects who satisfied each component of the criteria of the metabolic syndrome, namely that of an excessive waist circumference, hypertension, dislipidemia, or hyperglycemia was significantly higher in the former than in the latter, respectively. When subjects with a waist circumferences of 85 cm or more were selectively studied, the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome was still higher in excessive drinkers (39.2%) than in average drinkers (32.4%, χ2 =4.0, p=0.049), whereas the waist circumference was not significantly different between the two groups. Conclusion: Excessive ethanol consumption is associated with an increased prevalence of the metabolic syndrome following the current. clinical diagnostic criteria. Excessive ethanol consumption could simply be a factor worsening the metabolic syndrome. However, we must be aware of another possibility that excessive ethanol consumption increases the number of subjects regarded as the metabolic syndrome via mechanisms differing from visceral fat accumulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1345-1352
Number of pages8
JournalInternal Medicine
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Sept 3


  • Excessive ethanol consumption
  • Metabolic syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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