We previously reported that the frequency of cheese intake (FCI) was negatively associated with serum triglycerides and positively associated with high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL), both components of the metabolic syndrome (MetS). We therefore wanted to study whether FCI is associated with MetS.
The Oslo Health Study (18,770 subjects), obtained data from 7815 men and 9685 women on cheese intake and risk factors for MetS, except for fasting glucose. MetS requires central obesity and at least 2 of the following: increased triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol, increased systolic or diastolic blood pressure, and elevated fasting blood glucose. We calculated the index SumRisk, providing the number of MetS factors present, and MetSRisk to reflect the combined levels of many MetS factors. The association between FCI and MetSRisk (SumRisk) was studied using regression analyses.
In young (30 years), middle-aged (40 and 45 years), seniors (59-60), and old (75-76 years) subjects, there was an inverse association between FCI and MetSRisk (p = 0.005, except in old men). Using regression, we found a consistent negative association (p