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Associations of low muscle mass and the metabolic syndrome in Caucasian and Asian middle-aged and older adults


Scott, D and Park, MS and Kim, TN and Ryu, JY and Hong, HC and Yoo, HJ and Baik, SH and Jones, G and Choi, KM, Associations of low muscle mass and the metabolic syndrome in Caucasian and Asian middle-aged and older adults, Journal of Nutrition, Health and Aging, 20, (3) pp. 248-255. ISSN 1279-7707 (2015) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2015 Springer

DOI: doi:10.1007/s12603-015-0559-z


Objective: Age-related declines in skeletal muscle mass may confer significant metabolic consequences for older adults. Associations of low muscle mass and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in Caucasians, and comparisons with associations observed in Asian populations, have not been reported. We examined associations of low muscle mass and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in Asian and Caucasian middle-aged and older men and women using criteria for low muscle mass.

Design, Setting and Participants: Two population-based studies of Australian (Tasmanian Older Adult Cohort Study; TASOAC; N < 1005) and Korean (Korean Sarcopenic Obesity Study; KSOS; N < 376) community-dwelling adults, mean age 62 and 58 years, respectively.

Measurements: Appendicular lean mass (aLM) determined by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry and normalised to height squared (aLM/Ht2), weight (aLM/Wt) or body mass index (aLM/BMI). Participants in the lowest sex-specific 20% for aLM measures were defined as having low muscle mass. MetS was defined according to National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III criteria.

Results: Although Australians demonstrated generally unfavourable anthropometric and metabolic characteristics compared to Koreans, prevalence of MetS was similar (29.5% in Australians and 31.4% in Koreans, respectively). Low aLM/Ht2 was associated with significantly reduced likelihood of MetS in both Australians (OR: 0.30, 95% CI 0.19 - 0.46) and Koreans (OR: 0.31, 95% CI 0.16 - 0.62). Conversely, low aLM/BMI was associated with increased odds for MetS in Australians (OR: 1.78, 95% CI 1.12-2.84), but not Koreans (OR: 1.33, 95% CI = 0.67-2.64).

Conclusion: Low aLM/BMI is associated with significantly increased likelihood of MetS in Australian adults, but not Koreans, suggesting potential differences in effects of low muscle mass relative to body mass on cardiometabolic health in Caucasian and Asian middle-aged and older adults. Low muscle mass relative to height is associated with reduced likelihood of MetS in both populations.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:muscle mass, metabolic syndrome, aging, sarcopenia
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Clinical sciences
Research Field:Rheumatology and arthritis
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Clinical health not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Jones, G (Professor Graeme Jones)
ID Code:102317
Year Published:2015
Web of Science® Times Cited:48
Deposited By:Menzies Institute for Medical Research
Deposited On:2015-08-12
Last Modified:2017-11-03

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