Main Organiser

Julius Centre University of Malaya

Co-organiser

Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malay

Supported by

University of Malaya

ASSOCIATION BETWEEN PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND METABOLIC SYNDROME AMONG A MALAY POPULATION IN MALAYSIA

Author

Chu, AHY

Institution

University of Malaya

Abstract

Objectives: Metabolic syndrome is a common health problem highly prevalent within the adult population in developing countries. We aimed to study the association of physical activity levels with metabolic syndrome in Malay adults.

Methods: This was a cross-sectional study. Measures of body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, systolic/diastolic blood pressure, fasting blood glucose, fasting triglycerides and high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol were obtained in 686 Malay participants (aged 35–74 years). Self-reported physical activity was obtained with the validated IPAQ-M and categorized into low-, moderate- and vigorous-activity levels.

Results: Individuals who were classified as overweight and obese predominate (65.6%). Based on the modified NCEP ATP III criteria, metabolic syndrome was diagnosed in 31.9% of participants, with 37.1% and 24.2% of men and women, respectively. The prevalence of metabolic syndrome among individuals with low-, moderate-, and high-activity level was 13.3%, 11.7% and 7.0%, respectively (P < 0.001). We demonstrated an inverse association between BMI, the number of metabolic abnormalities and low physical activity level (P < 0.05). The odds ratios (95% CI) for having the metabolic syndrome in the top categories of vigorous and moderate activity were 0.42 (95% CI: 0.27, 0.65) and 0.52 (95% CI: 0.35, 0.76) respectively, adjusted for gender.

Conclusion: Moderate and vigorous physical activity are each associated with reduced risks of having the metabolic syndrome independently of gender. Physical activity does not need to be vigorous to yield positive health benefits; moderate activities may be beneficial to the metabolic syndrome cluster of risk factors among middle-aged populations.