The association between self-rated health and impaired glucose tolerance in Swedish adults: A cross-sectional study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Objective. To investigate gender differences in the association between self-rated health (SRH) and impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) in subjects unaware of their glucose tolerance. Design. A cross-sectional population-based study. Setting. The two municipalities of Vara and Skovde in south-western Sweden. Subjects. A total of 2502 participants (1301 women and 1201 men), aged 30-75, were randomly selected from the population. Main outcome measures. IGT was regarded as the outcome measure and SRH as the main risk factor. Results. The prevalence of IGT was significantly higher in women (11.9%) than in men (10.1%), (p = 0.029), as was the prevalence of low SRH (women: 35.4%; men: 22.1%, p = 0.006). Both men and women with low SRH had a poorer risk factor profile than those with high SRH, and a statistically significant crude association between SRH and IGT was found in both men (OR = 2.8, 95% CI 1.8-4.4) and women (OR = 1.5, 95% CI 1.0-2.2, p = 0.033). However, after controlling for several lifestyle factors and biomedical variables, the association was attenuated and remained statistically significant solely in men (OR = 2.3, 95% CI 1.2-4.3). Conclusion. The gender-specific associations found between SRH and IGT suggest that SRH may be a better indicator of IGT in men than in women. Future studies should evaluate the utility of SRH in comparison with objective health measures as a potential aid to health practitioners when deciding whether to screen for IGT and T2DM.


  • Susanne Andersson
  • Inger Ekman
  • Febe Friberg
  • Bledar Daka
  • Ulf Lindblad
  • Charlotte A Larsson
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Health Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy


  • Gender, general practice, impaired glucose tolerance, self-rated health, Sweden
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-118
JournalScandinavian Journal of Primary Health Care
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Publication categoryResearch