Karolina Olszewska, Katarzyna Kliś, Iwona Teul, Iwona Wronka


Introduction: Current research from around the world indicates a trend toward younger ages at the first menstruation. At the same time more and more studies point out the negative consequences of early puberty. Early age at menarche is significantly correlated with the risk of metabolic syndrome, breast cancer and female reproductive system cancer, as well as illnesses such asthma and bulimia. The aim of the study was to examine the relationship between age at menarche and socioeconomic status and selected factors connected with biological conditions.

Material and methods: The data were obtained from 671 female university students. Height, weight, waist and hip circumference were measured, and BMI, WHR, WHtR were calculated. A questionnaire form was used to assess the age at menarche, biological conditions and socioeconomic status of the surveyed students.

Results: There were no significant differences in the number of the early, average and late maturing students between the socioeconomic groups. The early maturing girls were characterized by higher values of waist circumference, BMI, WHR and WHtR. The prevalence of obesity and abdominal obesity was highest among the early maturing girls. The analysis did not show statistically significant relationships between age at menarche and selected factors connected with biological conditions.

Conclusion: Early maturation increases the risk of obesity and central adiposity distribution.


early puberty; living conditions; biological condition

Full Text:

PDF (Język Polski)


Kaplowitz P.: Pubertal development in girls: secular trends. Curr Opin Obstet Gynecol. 2006, 18, 487–491.

Kowal M., Cichocka B., Woronkowicz A., Pilecki M.W., Sobiecki J., Kryst Ł.: Międzypokoleniowe zmiany w budowie ciała i akceleracja pokwitania u dzieci i młodzieży w wieku 7–15 lat z populacji wielkomiejskiej w świetle uwarunkowań psychosocjalnych. Akad. Wychow. Fizycz. im. B. Czecha w Krakowie, Kraków 2011.

Parent A.S., Teilmann G., Juul A., Skakkebaek N.E., Toppari J., Bourguignon J.P.: The timing of normal puberty and the age limits of sexual precocity: variations around the world, secular trends, and changes after migration. Endocr Rev. 2003, 24, 668–693.

Wronka I.: Wpływ czynników społeczno-ekonomicznych na wiek menarche. In: Księga jubileuszowa. Ed. K. Kaczanowski. Wyd. Plus, Kraków 2008, 281–297.

McIntyre M.H.: Adult stature, body proportions and age at menarche in the United States National Health and Nutrition Survey (NHANES) III. Ann Hum Biol. 2011, 38, 716–720.

Okasha M., McCarron P., McEwen J., Davey Smith G.: Age at menarche, secular trends and association with adult anthropometric measures. Ann Hum Biol. 2001, 28, 68–78.

Malinowski A., Stolarczyk H.: Cechy budowy somatycznej dziewcząt w zależności od wieku menarche. In: Antropologia a medycyna i promocja zdrowia. Ed. A. Malinowski. Wyd. Uniw. Łódzkiego, Łódź 1996, t. 2, 258–275.

Wattigney W., Srinivasan S., Chen W., Greenlund K., Berenson G.: Secular trend of earlier onset of menarche with increasing obesity in black and white girls: the Bogalusa Heart Study. Ethn Dis. 1999, 9, 181–189.

Ribeiro J., Santos P., Duarte J., Mota J.: Association between overweight and early sexual maturation in Portuguese boys and girls. Ann Hum Biol. 2006, 33, 55–63.

Aksglaede L., Juul A., Olsen L.W., Sřrensen T.I.: Age at puberty and the emerging obesity epidemic. PLoS One. 2009, 4, e8450.

Berkey C.S., Willett W.C., Frazier A.L., Rosner B., Tamimi R.M., Colditz G.A.: Prospective study of growth and development in older girls and risk of benign breast disease in young women. Cancer. 2011, 117, 1612−1620.

Ahlgren M., Melbeye M., Wohlfahrt J., Thorkild I., Sorensen A.: Growth patterns and the risk of breast cancer in women. N Eng J Med. 2004, 351, 1619–1626.

Jacobsen B.K., Oda K., Knutsen S.F., Fraser G.E.: Age at menarche, total mortality and mortality from ischaemic heart disease and stroke: the Adventist Health Study, 1976–88. Int J Epidemiol. 2009, 38, 245−252.

Lakshman R., Forouhi N.G., Sharp S.J., Luben R., Bingham S.A., Khaw K.T. et al.: Early age at menarche associated with cardiovascular disease and mortality. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2009, 94, 4953–4960.

Al-Sahab B., Hamadeh, M.J., Ardern, C.I., Tamim H.: Early menarche predicts incidence of asthma in early adulthood. Am J Epidemiol. 2011, 173, 64–70.

Euling S.Y., Herman-Giddens M.E., Lee P.A., Selevan S.G., Juul A., Sorensen T.I. et al.: Examination of US puberty timing data from 1940 to 1994 for secular trends: panel findings. Pediatrics. 2008, 121, 172–191.

Rigon F., Bianchin L., Bernasconi S., Bona G., Bozzola M., Buzi F. et al.: Update on age at menarche in Italy: toward the leveling off of the secular trend. J Adolesc Health. 2010, 46, 38–44.

Anderson S.E., Must A.: Interpreting the continued decline in the average age at menarche: results from two nationally representative surveys of US girls studied 10 apart. J Pediatr. 2005, 147, 753–760.

Padez C., Rocha M.A.: Age at menarche in Coimbra (Portugal) school girls: a note on the secular hanges. Ann Hum Biol. 2003, 30, 622–632.

Olesen A.W., Jeune B., Boldsen J.L.: A continuous decline in menarcheal age in Denmark. Ann Hum Biol. 2000, 27, 337–348.

Łaska-Mierzejewska T., Olszewska E.: The maturation rate of girls living in rich and poor rural regions of Poland before and after transformation of 1989. Homo. 2004, 55, 129–142.

Łaska-Mierzejewska T.: Relationship between the body height/weight proportions (ponderal index) and the age at menarche. Biol Sports. 1993, 10, 245–256.

Buyken A.E., Karaolis-Danckert N., Remer T.: Association of prepubertal body composition in healthy girls and boys with the timing of early and late pubertal markers. Am J Clin Nutr. 2009, 89, 221–230.

Wronka I., Pawlińska-Chmara R.: Wpływ tempa dojrzewania na kształtowanie się dorosłych proporcji wagowo-wzrostowych u dziewcząt. Wiad Lek. 2005, 58, 513–519.

Hulanicka B., Lipowicz A., Kozieł S., Kowalisko A.: Relationship between early puberty and the risk of hypertension/overweight at the age 50: Evidence for modified Barker hypothesis among Polish youth. Econ Hum Biol. 2007, 5, 48–60.

Lassek W.D., Gaulin S.J.C.: Menarche is related to fat distribution. Am J Phys Anthropol. 2007, 133, 1147–1151.

Johansson T., Ritzen E.M.: Very long-term follow-up of girls with early and late menarche. Endocr Dev. 2005, 8, 126–136.

Peteers P.H., Verbeek A.L., Król A., Matthssien M.N., de Waard F.: Age at menarche and breast cancer risk in nulliparous women. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 1995, 33, 55–61.

Mueller N.T., Duncan B.B., Barreto S.M., Chor D., Bessel M., Aquino E.M. et al.: Earlier age at menarche is associated with higher diabetes risk and cardiometabolic disease risk factors in Brazilian adults: Brazilian Longitudinal Study of Adult Health (ELSA-Brasil). Cardiovasc Diabetol. 2014, 13, 22–28.

Kaltiala-Heino R., Rimpel M., Rissaner A., Rantaanen P.: Early puberty and early sexual activity are associated with bulimic – type eating pathology in middle adolescence. J Adolesc Health. 2001, 28, 346–352.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.21164/pomjlifesci.60

Copyright (c) 2016 Karolina Olszewska, Katarzyna Kliś, Iwona Teul, Iwona Wronka

License URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/pl/