Being underweight could trigger an early menopause
In a study of almost 80,000 women, published in the journal Human Reproduction, researchers concluded that being underweight is a huge risk for women of an early menopause.
The term early menopause is defined as occurring before the age of 45. Early menopause is associated with a higher risk of osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease and even cognitive decline.
The researchers defined a woman with a weight between 18.5 and 24.9 kilograms per square meter as a normal weight and anyone weighing less as underweight. The study found those considered underweight at age 18 were 50% more likely to experience an early menopause and those considered underweight at age 35 had a 59% greater chance of an early menopause.
Lead researcher Dr. Kathleen Szegda said “Causes of early menopause are not clearly understood however our findings suggest that being underweight may have an impact on the timing of menopause. More research is needed to understand how it increases the risk of an early menopause.”
NOTE: The journal Human Reproduction features peer reviewed papers reporting original research covering the clinical science and medical aspects of reproduction.