Objectives: The effect of meat consumption on cardiometabolic risk has been continuously studied, but their associations are not conclusive. The aim of this study is to examine the association between the consumption of meat or red meat and carotid intima-media thickness (IMT) in healthy Korean adults. Methods: This study evaluated 2374 community-dwelling adults (933 men and 1441 women) who were free of cardiovas-cular disease or cancer, living in a rural area in Korea. Total meat and red meat intakes were assessed with a validated 103 item-food frequency questionnaire. Carotid IMT was evaluated ultrasonographically, IMTmax was defined as the highest value among IMT of bilateral common carotid arteries. Results: After adjustment for potential confounding factors, the mean IMTmax tended to increase in higher meat consumption groups in both men and women with metabolic syndrome (p for trend= 0.027 and 0.049, respectively), but not in participants without metabolic syndrome. Frequent meat consumption (≥5 servings/week) was significantly associated with higher IMTmax in men with metabolic syndrome (by 0.08 mm, p=0.015). Whereas, the association was not significant in women (by 0.05 mm, p=0.115). Similar but attenuated findings were shown with red meat intake. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that a higher meat consumption may be associated with a higher carotid IMT in Korean adults with metabolic syndrome. The frequent meat consumption (≥5 servings/week), compared with the others, was associated with a higher carotid IMTmax only in men with metabolic syndrome. Further research is required to explore optimal meat consumption in people with specific medical conditions.
- Carotid arteries
- Metabolic syndrome