Journal of Gastroenterology

, Volume 42, Issue 4, pp 267–274

Metabolic syndrome and gastrointestinal diseases


  • Sumio Watanabe
    • Department of GastroenterologyJuntendo University, School of Medicine
  • Mariko Hojo
    • Department of GastroenterologyJuntendo University, School of Medicine
  • Akihito Nagahara
    • Department of GastroenterologyJuntendo University, School of Medicine

DOI: 10.1007/s00535-007-2033-0

Cite this article as:
Watanabe, S., Hojo, M. & Nagahara, A. J Gastroenterol (2007) 42: 267. doi:10.1007/s00535-007-2033-0


Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of metabolic abnormalities consisting essentially of obesity, especially abdominal obesity. Metabolic syndrome has been highlighted as a risk factor for cardiovascular and other chronic diseases. Obesity has been implicated in various gastrointestinal diseases such as gastroesophageal reflux diseases and colorectal cancer. Recently, abdominal obesity has been shown to be more important than obesity as expressed by an elevated body mass index as a causative factor for the development of these diseases. In addition to the mechanical effects of obesity, such as an increase in intra-abdominal pressure from large amounts of adipose tissue, substances that adipose tissues secrete, such as tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-6, leptin, and insulin-like growth factor-1, have been proposed to be pathogenic links to these diseases. In this review, we discuss the association of metabolic syndrome or the individual components of metabolic syndrome, focusing on obesity and abdominal obesity, with gastrointestinal diseases.

Key words

visceral obesityadipokinesGERDesophageal adenocarcinomacolorectal cancer
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© Springer-Verlag Tokyo 2007