A low-fat dietary pattern and risk of metabolic syndrome in postmenopausal women: The Women's Health Initiative.

Publication Type:

Journal Article

Source:

Metabolism: clinical and experimental, Volume 61, Issue 11, p.1572-81 (2012)

Keywords:

2012, Center-Authored Paper, June 2012, Nutrition Assessment Core Facility, Public Health Sciences Division, Shared Resources, Specimen Processing Core Facility

Abstract:

OBJECTIVE: Nutrition plays an important role in metabolic syndrome etiology. We examined whether the Women's Health Initiative (WHI) Dietary Modification Trial influenced metabolic syndrome risk. MATERIALS/METHODS: 48,835 postmenopausal women aged 50-79years were randomized to a low-fat (20% energy from fat) diet (intervention) or usual diet (comparison) for a mean of 8.1years. Blood pressure, waist circumference and fasting blood measures of glucose, HDL-cholesterol and triglycerides were measured on a subsample (n=2816) at baseline and years 1, 3 and 6 post-randomization. Logistic regression estimated associations of the intervention with metabolic syndrome risk and use of cholesterol-lowering and hypertension medications. Multivariate linear regression tested associations between the intervention and metabolic syndrome components. RESULTS: At year 3, but not years 1 or 6, women in the intervention group (vs. comparison) had a non-statistically significant lower risk of metabolic syndrome (OR=0.83, 95%CI 0.59-1.18). Linear regression models simultaneously modeling the five metabolic syndrome components revealed significant associations of the intervention with metabolic syndrome at year 1 (p<0.0001), but not years 3 (p=0.19) and 6 (p=0.17). Analyses restricted to intervention-adherent participants strengthened associations at years 3 (p=0.05) and 6 (p=0.06). Cholesterol-lowering and hypertension medication use was 19% lower at year 1 for intervention vs. comparison group women (OR=0.81, 95% CI 0.60-1.09).Over the entire trial, fewer intervention vs. comparison participants used these medications (26.0% vs. 29.9%), although results were not statistically significant (p=0.89). CONCLUSIONS: The WHI low-fat diet may influence metabolic syndrome risk and decrease use of hypertension and cholesterol-lowering medications. Findings have potential for meaningful clinical translation.