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Prev Med. 2012 Sep;55(3):183-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2012.06.009. Epub 2012 Jun 20.

Associations of smoking and smoking cessation with CT-measured visceral obesity in 4656 Korean men.

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Department of Family Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seongnam-si, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea.



Although obesity is shown to be less common among current smokers than never smokers, the association between visceral obesity and smoking remains uncertain.


For this cross-sectional analysis, we recruited 4656 Korean men of 19 to 79 years who received a regular checkup at a health examination center between 2008 and 2010. Computed tomography was performed to measure the area of visceral and subcutaneous adipose tissue (VAT and SAT). We compared the mean VAT by multiple regression analysis across smoking status after adjusting for confounders.


Both current and former smokers had more mean VAT than never smokers. Current smokers who consumed more than 20 cigarettes per day had 11% higher mean VAT than never smokers (P<0.01). Longer smoking duration, higher daily cigarette consumption before quitting, and shorter abstinence duration among ex-smokers were associated with increasing mean VAT (all P for trend<0.01). The mean VAT in former smokers was highest within 2 years of abstinence. There was no significant difference of mean VAT between ex-smokers with >20 years of abstinence duration and never smokers.


Both current and former smoking is associated with increased VAT. The risk of visceral obesity is proportional to the degree of exposure to cigarette smoking.

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