Plasma alkylresorcinols C17:0/C21:0 ratio, a biomarker of relative whole-grain rye intake, is associated to insulin sensitivity: a randomized study.

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Background/Objectives:Few studies have used biomarkers of whole-grain intake to study its relation to glucose metabolism. We aimed to investigate the association between plasma alkylresorcinols (AR), a biomarker of whole-grain rye and wheat intake, and glucose metabolism in individuals with metabolic syndrome (MetS).Subjects/Methods:Participants were 30-65 years of age, with body mass index 27-40 kg/m(2) and had MetS without diabetes. Individuals were recruited through six centers in the Nordic countries and randomized to a healthy Nordic diet (ND, n=96), rich in whole-grain rye and wheat, or a control diet (n=70), for 18-24 weeks. In addition, associations between total plasma AR concentration and C17:0/C21:0 homolog ratio as an indication of the relative whole-grain rye intake, and glucose metabolism measures from oral glucose tolerance tests were investigated in pooled (ND+control) regression analyses at 18/24 weeks.Results:ND did not improve glucose metabolism compared with control diet, but the AR C17:0/C21:0 ratio was inversely associated with fasting insulin concentrations (P=0.002) and positively associated with the insulin sensitivity indices Matsuda ISI (P=0.026) and disposition index (P=0.022) in pooled analyses at 18/24 weeks, even after adjustment for confounders. The AR C17:0/C21:0 ratio was not significantly associated with insulin secretion indices. Total plasma AR concentration was not related to fasting plasma glucose or fasting insulin at 18/24 weeks.Conclusions:The AR C17:0/C21:0 ratio, an indicator of relative whole-grain rye intake, is associated with increased insulin sensitivity in a population with MetS.European Journal of Clinical Nutrition advance online publication, 19 February 2014; doi:10.1038/ejcn.2014.12.


  • O K Magnusdottir
  • R Landberg
  • I Gunnarsdottir
  • L Cloetens
  • B Akesson
  • Mona Landin-Olsson
  • F Rosqvist
  • D Iggman
  • U Schwab
  • K-H Herzig
  • M J Savolainen
  • L Brader
  • K Hermansen
  • M Kolehmainen
  • K Poutanen
  • M Uusitupa
  • I Thorsdottir
  • U Risérus
External organisations
  • Skåne University Hospital
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Other Clinical Medicine
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)453–458
JournalEuropean Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Early online date2014 Feb 19
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Publication categoryResearch