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J Prev Med Public Health. 2012 Mar;45(2):98-104. doi: 10.3961/jpmph.2012.45.2.98. Epub 2012 Mar 31.

The association between serum albumin levels and metabolic syndrome in a rural population of Korea.

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Department of Preventive Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.



A positive association between serum albumin levels and metabolic syndrome has been reported in observation studies, but it has not been established in the Korean population. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the association between serum albumin levels and the presence of metabolic syndrome among a sample of apparently healthy Korean adults.


This cross-sectional study analyzed data of 3189 community-dwelling people (1189 men and 2000 women) who were aged 40 to 87 years and were living in a rural area in Korea. Serum albumin levels were classified into quartile groups for each sex. Metabolic syndrome was defined according to the National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III guidelines with an adjusted waist circumference cut-off value (≥90 cm for men and ≥85 cm for women). An independent association between serum albumin levels and metabolic syndrome was assessed by multiple logistic regression analysis.


Higher serum albumin levels were associated with increased prevalence of metabolic syndrome. The odds ratio (95% confidence interval) of the prevalence of metabolic syndrome for the highest versus the lowest serum albumin quartiles was 2.81 (1.91 to 4.14) in men and 1.96 (1.52 to 2.52) in women, after adjusting for age, smoking status, alcohol consumption, and physical activity. When each metabolic abnormality was analyzed separately, higher serum albumin levels were significantly associated with hypertriglyceridemia and hyperglycemia in both sexes, and with abdominal obesity in men.


These results suggest that higher serum albumin levels are positively associated with an increased risk of metabolic syndrome in Korean adults.


Abdominal obesity; Albumin; Hypertension; Hypertriglyceridemia; Metabolic syndrome

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