Association between muscle strength and metabolic syndrome in older Korean men and women: the Korean Longitudinal Study on Health and Aging

Metabolism. 2012 Mar;61(3):317-24. doi: 10.1016/j.metabol.2011.07.005. Epub 2011 Aug 25.


The objective of the study was to investigate the association between metabolic syndrome (MS) and muscle strength in community-dwelling older men and women in Korea. Korean men and women 65 years and older living in a single, typical South Korean city (n = 647) were enrolled in the Korean Longitudinal Study on Health and Aging study. The diagnosis of MS was evaluated according to the definition of the National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III. Isokinetic muscle strength of the knee extensors, as determined by peak torque per body weight (newton meter per kilogram) and hand-grip strength per body weight (newton per kilogram), was measured. Participants without MS had greater leg muscle strength and grip strength per weight. The effect of MS on muscle strength was more prominent in men than in women in our study population. Only men showed a significant interaction between MS and age for muscle strength (P = .014), and the effect was greater in men aged 65 to 74 years compared with those older than 75 years (119.2 ± 31.2 vs 134.5 ± 24.3 N m/kg). Participants with MS had weaker knee extensor strength after controlling the covariates (β = -90.80, P = .003), and the interaction term (age × MS × male sex) was significant (β = 1.00, P = .017). Metabolic syndrome is associated with muscle weakness, and this relationship is particularly pronounced in men. Age can modify the impact of MS on muscle strength. Men aged 65 to 74 years with MS need a thorough assessment of muscle strength to prevent disability.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging / physiology
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Body Mass Index
  • Body Weight / physiology
  • Educational Status
  • Female
  • Hand Strength / physiology
  • Health
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Metabolic Syndrome / physiopathology*
  • Metabolic Syndrome / psychology
  • Middle Aged
  • Motor Activity / physiology
  • Muscle Strength / physiology*
  • Muscle Weakness / epidemiology
  • Muscle Weakness / etiology
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Organ Size / physiology
  • Republic of Korea / epidemiology
  • Sex Characteristics
  • Smoking / adverse effects
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Waist Circumference


  • Blood Glucose