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Jan 2019, Vol 7, Issue 1
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Original Article
The Severity of Menopausal Symptoms and its Relation to Obesity, Smoking, and Exercise in Middle-Aged Jordanian Women
Ruba M Jaber1, Hana H Abu Hassan1, Malaak F Abuelayyan1, Jailan N Yasin1, Heba M Jaber1
1Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan

IJWHR 2019; 7: 041-048
DOI: 10.15296/ijwhr.2019.07
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Keywords : Menopause, Obesity, Smoking, Exercise, and Quality of life
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Objectives: The present study aimed at finding the effect of menopausal transition, exercise, smoking, and obesity on menopausal transition. In addition, the impact of menopausal transition on women’s quality of life was investigated.

Materials and Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted at family medicine clinics of Jordan University Hospital (JUH). Totally, 359 women whose age varied from 45 to 65 years old were included, Variables including sociodemographic, smoking exercise and obesity, menopause status and its symptoms, and quality of life were assessed by self-administered and validated questionnaire. Data were analyzed using SPSS, version 16.

Results: The mean age at the menopause was 49.4 years. More than 38% of the participants practiced no or irregular exercise and slightly more than 92% had abnormal body mass index (BMI) of ≥25 kg/m2. Besides, women who practiced no or irregular exercise were significantly more likely to experience irritability, be mentally and physically exhausted, report sexual problems, and muscles and joint discomfort (P value of < 0.05). In addition, women with an abnormal waist to hip ratio were statistically at an increased risk of experiencing sexual problems.

Conclusions: Based on the results, it can be concluded that normal body weight and regular and effective exercise were the key factors in alleviating menopausal symptoms during the menopausal transition, especially the psychological or mental symptoms and muscle and joint discomfort. Meanwhile, women in the midlife stage are recommended to be counseled about menopausal transition and its effect on mental and physical health. Moreover, they should be encouraged to maintain effective levels of exercise and to optimize their body weight whenever possible.

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