New research shows a startling high incidence of metabolic syndrome associated with instant noodle consumption in women.
Researchers from universities in South Korea, Boston and Dallas studied 10,711 South Koreans, aged between 19 and 64 years old. Participants completed a 63 item food frequency questionnaire and the researchers identified two main patterns within participants’ diets.
A traditional dietary pattern was defined as a diet rich in fish, vegetables, fruit, potatoes and rice. A meat and fast food pattern was defined as higher intakes of meat, fizzy drinks, fried food and convenience foods including instant noodles.
The researchers graded people’s diets into which most closely matched the traditional dietary pattern and which most closely matched the meat and fast food pattern. Whilst those that most closely matched the fast food pattern were more likely to be obese and have high levels of LDL cholesterol, there was no significant difference observed in the rates of metabolic syndrome (prediabetes or type 2 diabetes) between the different dietary patterns.
More surprisingly, when the researchers looked specifically at the results of instant noodles consumptio, they found that women that consumed instant noodles twice a week or more were 68% more likely to develop glucose intolerance. By comparison, men that consumed instant noodles twice or more per week demonstrated a 7% lower risk of metabolic syndrome.

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