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BioMed Research International
Volume 2016, Article ID 3973197, 8 pages
Research Article

Gender-Specific Associations between Socioeconomic Status and Psychological Factors and Metabolic Syndrome in the Korean Population: Findings from the 2013 Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

1Department of Internal Medicine, Kosin University School of Medicine, 34 Amnam-Dong, Seo-Ku, Busan 602-702, Republic of Korea
2Department of Internal Medicine, Pusan National University Hospital and Biomedical Research Institute, 179 Gudeok-Ro, Seo-Gu, Busan 602-739, Republic of Korea
3Department of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery, Research Institute for Convergence of Biomedical Science and Technology, Pusan National University Yangsan Hospital, Yangsan 626-770, Republic of Korea
4Department of Internal Medicine, Busan Paik Hospital, University of Inje College of Medicine, Busan 614-735, Republic of Korea
5Department of Internal Medicine, Pusan National University Yangsan Hospital, Yangsan 626-770, Republic of Korea

Received 19 October 2016; Accepted 27 October 2016

Academic Editor: Abdulbari Bener

Copyright © 2016 Kyoung Im Cho et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We aimed to assess the gender-specific associations between psychological factors and socioeconomic status (SES) and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in Korean adults. We examined 4,689 Korean adults aged 20–79 years who participated in the 2013 Korean National Health Examination and Nutrition Survey. With regard to SES, occupation status (none, manual, and nonmanual), marital status (single, married, divorced, and widowed), and psychological factors (detection of stress, depressive symptoms, and suicidal thoughts) were determined via questionnaires. Compared with married men, single and divorced men exhibited ORs (95% confidence interval [CIs]) for MetS of 0.45 (0.31–0.65) and 1.61 (1.02–2.55), respectively, after adjusting for covariates. However, this association was not significant in women. Compared with those in the lowest household income group and least educated group in women, the ORs for MetS in the highest income group and the most educated group were 0.63 (CI 0.46–0.86) and 0.46 (CI 0.32–0.67), respectively. Suicidal thoughts in men (OR 1.64, CI 1.03–2.61) and perceived stress in women (OR 1.26, CI 1.01–1.59) were associated with MetS. In this study, MetS has gender-specific associations with lower SES and psychological factors. Thus, gender-specific public health interventions based on SES and psychological factors are needed to prevent and treat MetS and reduce additional cardiovascular disease risk.