Magnesium, Metabolic Syndrome, and Insulin Resistance

Byron's Comments:

Magnesium is needed for the healthy function of many enzymes involved with blood sugar and insulin metabolism.

Study Title:

Low serum magnesium levels in elderly subjects with metabolic syndrome.

Study Abstract:

This study aims at determining possible association between serum magnesium (Mg) concentrations and metabolic syndrome (MetS) in elderly subjects. Subjects were 137 men and women aged 60 to 90 years, selected from among participants of the Tehran Lipid and Glucose Study after excluding those taking medications for hypertension and dyslipidemia. Serum Mg levels were measured by atomic absorption spectrometry and MetS was defined according to ATP III criteria. The overall prevalence of MetS was 43.8%. Among MetS components, only plasma glucose showed a negative correlation with serum Mg concentrations (r = -0.194, p = 0.024). Subjects with MetS had significantly lower serum Mg concentrations compared with non-MetS ones (2.09 +/- 0.03 vs. 2.18 +/- 0.03 mg/dL, p = 0.033) even after adjustments with MetS components except for hyperglycemia (2.04 +/- 0.06 vs. 2.20 +/- 0.05 mg/dL, p = 0.011). However, after adjustment for hyperglycemia per se or along with the other MetS components, the significant difference between serum Mg levels in subjects with and without MetS disappeared. In conclusion, serum Mg level is diminished in elderly subjects with MetS, and hyperglycemia may play dominant role in this decrease; however, the results do not clarify whether the low serum Mg level is a consequence of hyperglycemia or is a risk factor contributing to its development.

Study Information:

Ghasemi A, Zahediasl S, Syedmoradi L, Azizi F. Low serum magnesium levels in elderly subjects with metabolic syndrome. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2010 July 136(1):18-25.
Endocrine Research Center, Research Institute for Endocrine Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, P.O. Box 19395-4763, Tehran, Iran.




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