Korean J Nutr.  2011 Oct;44(5):406-415. 10.4163/kjn.2011.44.5.406.

The Association between Consumption of Processed Meat and Prevalence of Metabolic Syndrome Among Korean Adults: Based on 2007-2008 Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

  • 1Department of Food & Nutrition, Yeungnam University, Gyeongsan 712-749, Korea. kypark@ynu.ac.kr


Recent studies have shown that high consumption of processed meat may be associated with increasing risk of metabolic syndrome, which have been suggested as a predictor of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. However, limited studies have investigated this association in Korean population. The purpose of this study was to investigate the cross-sectional association between processed meat/unprocessed (beef, pork, chicken) intakes and the prevalence of metabolic syndrome. Using data from 2007-2008 Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES), we analyzed data including 5,545 men and women who were aged older than 20 years, and who were free of chronic disease such as hypertension, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Subjects who frequently consumed processed meat tended to be younger and more likely to be current smokers. In addition, men were more likely to consume processed meat than women. Although higher processed/unprocessed meat intakes were significantly associated with the lower risk of metabolic syndrome in a crude model, these associations were no longer significant after adjustment for potential confounding factors. For example, comparing subjects in the highest intake quartile of processed meat with the lowest intake group, the multivariate-adjusted odds ratio (OR) of metabolic syndrome was 0.92 (95% CI: 0.58-1.46) for processed meat, 1.09 (95% CI: 0.76-1.56) for beef, 1.10 (95% CI: 0.74-1.62) for pork and 0.75 (95% CI: 0.51-1.12) for chicken. In conclusion, we found no evidence of any adverse effects of frequent processed or unprocessed meat intakes on the prevalence of metabolic syndrome among Korean adults at the exposure levels seen in this study.


metabolic syndrome; processed meat; meat

MeSH Terms

Cardiovascular Diseases
Chronic Disease
Nutrition Surveys
Odds Ratio
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