What is metabolic syndrome? I’ve asked so many people about this, and some would tell me that they think it has something to do with a problem with one’s metabolism. Well, it is a health problem, but it has nothing to do with metabolism; it’s about your heart health. Today, we’ll talk more about metabolic syndrome and its symptoms.
WHAT IS METABOLIC SYNDROME?
Metabolic syndrome isn’t the name of the disease or illness itself. It is actually a group of health problems that will put a person at a higher risk of developing heart diseases like a heart attack or stroke. In the U.K. alone, 1 out of 4 adults has metabolic syndrome. The health problems under metabolic syndrome are also known as risk factors.
THE FIVE METABOLIC SYNDROME RISK FACTORS
There are five risk factors of metabolic syndrome. If you get three out of the five, you will be diagnosed with metabolic syndrome. These are the risk factors:
1. ELEVATED BLOOD SUGAR
Insulin helps control your blood sugar level, and insulin resistance means your body can resist the effects of insulin, which, in turn, makes the body produce more insulin to keep up with the sugar build-up in the blood. Since insulin is made in the pancreas, the pancreas works doubly hard to produce the insulin needed. Over time, the pancreas will be overstrained and will no longer make insulin. The result? Diabetes-a high blood sugar level that will stay high!
2. HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
High blood pressure or hypertension means the heart is working very hard to pump the blood for the body. This strains the heart and puts a person at higher risk of having heart issues. There is not a single cause of high blood pressure, and it’s usually a combination of different things. Eating salty food and food high in saturated fats, drinking alcohol, being overweight and a sedentary lifestyle are all possible causes
3. ABDOMINAL OBESITY
Obesity means a person is way beyond his/her ideal weight. But to check for metabolic syndrome, abdominal obesity (excess fat around the waistline) is more important to look at. Abdominal obesity will affect the body’s blood fats and can increase the risk of having diabetes. Here’s a chart to see if your waistline is still on the safe side or not:
80 cm or 32 inches ++
88 cm or 35 inches ++
94 cm or 37 inches ++
102 cm or 40 inches ++
4. LOW HDL AND TRIGLYCERIDES
Low HDL is the body’s good cholesterol. When you are overweight, the HDL level goes down. It is a must to get this higher to lower the risk of heart disease. Furthermore, avoid eating trans fat and refined carbohydrates as this can lower your HDL level. If you’re smoking, quit. Also, don’t drink alcohol as this can increase blood pressure and triglyceride levels.
5. FATTY LIVER DISEASE
Now, another factor to consider is when triglyceride levels are increased, people are more at risk of developing fatty liver disease. There are two types:
- Alcoholic Fatty Liver – means you got a fatty liver from drinking alcohol
- Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver – is a result of metabolic syndrome
When someone has a fatty liver, this means the liver has inflammation, which can damage the liver cells and puts a person at a higher risk of liver cirrhosis, fibrosis or liver cancer.
HOW TO DO YOU REVERSE METABOLIC SYNDROME?
The good news is that it doesn’t require taking medicines or surgery. All you need to do is start making lifestyle changes.
- Eat better and clean. Eat organic produce and meat and opt for grass-fed beef.
- Get active. Do at least 150 minutes of physical activity every week.
- Lose weight. The excess weight in the body is one of the major culprits for causing all these problems.
Nobody wants to live with a chip on his/her shoulder for the rest of one’s life. Reverse metabolic syndrome and start eliminating your risk for diabetes, heart disease and other health issues. Start living healthy because it’s the best gift you can give yourself. And if you need any help in getting rid of metabolic syndrome from your life, just message me!
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