The nonlinear association between outdoor temperature and cholesterol levels, with modifying effect of individual characteristics and behaviors

Lina Madaniyazi, Yuming Guo, Gail Williams, Jouni J.K. Jaakkola, Shouling Wu, Shanshan Li

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Few studies have been conducted to investigate the underlying mechanisms of the effect of temperature on cardiovascular disease at population level, especially among Chinese population. A total of 56,039 participants were recruited from Kailuan cohort study, China. The lipoprotein profile indicators, including triglycerides (TG), low-density lipoprotein (LDL), and high-density lipoprotein, were collected. Non-linear associations between temperature and the lipoprotein profile indicators were examined using a nonlinear function for temperature. Stratified analyses were performed in groups by individual characteristics (age, gender, and body mass index) and individual behaviors (physical activities and smoking habits). Generally, a non-linear relationship was found between cholesterol levels and temperature. A 1 °C decrease in temperature below the threshold was related with 0.004 mmol/L (95% CI 0.0004, 0.008), 0.022 mmol/L (95% CI 0.020, 0.025), and 0.009 mmol/L (95% CI 0.008, 0.011) increase in TG, LDL, and HDL, respectively; a 1 °C increase in temperature above the threshold was associated with 0.005 mmol/L (95% CI 0.003, 0.007), 0.012 mmol/L (95% CI 0.009, 0.015), and 0.002 mmol/L (95% CI 0.001, 0.004) increase in TG, LDL, and HDL, respectively. Stratified analyses showed that effect estimates on TG and LDL were larger among females, subjects with higher BMI, and those with smoking habits, while effect estimates on HDL were smaller among these subjects (expect for female). Our results suggest both cold and hot effect of temperature on cholesterol. Furthermore, females, and people with higher BMI or smoking habit may be more susceptible to outdoor temperature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)367-375
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Biometeorology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2020


  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Cholesterol
  • Modification effect
  • Outdoor temperature

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