Association Between Serum Ferritin Levels and Insulin Resistance in Nondiabetic Brazilians


  • Sally Cristina Moutinho Monteiro Federal University of Maranhão
  • Ilka Kassandra Pereira Belfort Federal University of Maranhão
  • Maurício Avelar Fernandes Federal University of Maranhão
  • Wandson Rodrigues Sousa Federal University of Maranhão
  • Márcio Flávio Moura de Araújo University for the International Integration of the Afro-Brazilian Lusophony



Ferritin, Insulin Resistance, Metabolic Syndrome


Background: Previous studies have pointed to a relation between high serum levels of ferritin and insulin resistance.

Objective: To analyze the association between the serum concentrations of ferritin and resistance to insulin, and metabolism of glucose, in nondiabetic persons.

Method: A transversal study was undertaken with 151 nondiabetic persons in São Luís, Brazil, in 2013. The following biochemical variables were analyzed: glycated hemoglobin, fasting glycemia, fasting insulin, total cholesterol, triglycerides, HDL-cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, serum ferritin and high-sensitivity C reactive proteins (hs-CRP).

Results: Among the participants with high levels of ferritin, approximately 20% and 40%, respectively, also had raised LDL-C (p=0.040) and hs-CRP (p=0.021). Prediabetes (p=0.016) and insulin resistance (p=0.026) had a statistically significant association with high levels of ferritin. The participants with raised ferritin also had double the probability of having raised hs-CRP (odds ratio = 2.29 / p=0.036).

Conclusion: There was a statistically significant association between prediabetes and insulin resistance and raised levels of ferritin. 

Author Biographies

Sally Cristina Moutinho Monteiro, Federal University of Maranhão


Ilka Kassandra Pereira Belfort, Federal University of Maranhão


Wandson Rodrigues Sousa, Federal University of Maranhão


Márcio Flávio Moura de Araújo, University for the International Integration of the Afro-Brazilian Lusophony

Health Institute


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