J Korean Diet Assoc.  2017 Feb;23(1):54-63. 10.14373/JKDA.2017.23.1.54.

Relationship between Diabetes Mellitus and Anemia in Korean Adults-Based on the Korean National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey VI

  • 1Division of Food and Nutrition, Chonnam National University, Gwangju 61186, Korea. sosung75@jnu.ac.kr


Anemia, defined as a reduction in the hemoglobin concentration of blood, is common in diabetes mellitus (DM) patients, can be potentially caused by diabetes complications such as nephropathy. Recent research suggests that diabetes mellitus (DM) itself may be a major risk factor of anemia. However, there are few Korean studies on the relationship between diabetes mellitus (DM) and anemia. This study was performed to investigate the association between anemia and diabetes mellitus (DM) in Korean adults. A total of 10,151 Korean adults over aged 19 years (4,422 male, 5,729 female) were selected from the participants of the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey VI (KNHANES VI). Korean adults with anemia had a higher prevalence of diabetes mellitus (DM) than the normal adults (11.4% vs. 30.4% in male, 8.8% vs. 9.4% in female). The unadjusted odds ratio (OR) for anemia was greater in adults with DM than in normal male (OR=3.28; 95% CI: 2.27~4.73). After adjusting for other risk factors including age, education, family income, smoking, drinking, and menstrual status, anemia and diabetes were not associated (OR=1.33; 95% CI: 0.84~2.09). Similarly, there was no association between anemia and diabetes in female. In conclusion, this study shows that the prevalence of anemia is similar in diabetic and non-diabetic Korean adults after adjusting for multiple risk factors. Further research is required to elucidate the mechanism of anemia caused as a consequence of diabetes mellitus (DM).


diabetes mellitus (DM); anemia; Korean; Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES) VI
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