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Vitamin D, oestrogen protect against metabolic syndrome after menopause

17 Jul 2019

Deficiencies in vitamin D and oestrogen contribute to additive increases in the risk of metabolic syndrome in postmenopausal women, a recent study has found.

The cross-sectional study included 616 postmenopausal women aged 49-86 years. None of them were taking oestrogen and vitamin D/calcium supplements. Researchers measured serum oestradiol (E2) and 25(OH)D for each participant in relation to the risk of metabolic syndrome, which was defined according to the 2006 International Diabetes Federation standard.

Results showed a positive correlation between 25(OH)D and E2. Higher 25(OH)D concentration was associated with a favourable lipid profile, blood pressure and glucose level. On the other hand, higher E2 concentration was associated with low levels of cholesterol, triglycerides and blood pressure.

Women with vitamin D deficiency were twice as likely as those with sufficient vitamin D levels to have metabolic syndrome (odds ratio [OR], 2.19, 95 percent CI, 1.19–4.01; p-trend=0.009). This association remained significant despite controlling for E2 levels.

On further analysis stratifying by vitamin D status, low E2 concentration augmented the risk of metabolic syndrome in women with vitamin D deficiency (lowest vs highest tertile of E2: OR, 3.49, 1.45–8.05).

The present data suggest that vitamin D and E2 deficiencies exert a potential synergistic effect on the risk of metabolic syndrome in postmenopausal women, the researchers said.

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