Metabolic syndrome is not a single disease, but is determined by the overall health status of the body. It has been found that metabolic syndrome is not the result of a single incidence, but is caused due to the occurrence of various inter-related conditions. These conditions should be managed to prevent the development of metabolic syndrome.
How Do You Prevent Metabolic Syndrome?
Lifestyle Changes: Metabolic syndrome is defined as the cluster of various conditions which increases the risk of cardiovascular pathologies, stroke and diabetes. These conditions are generally in the very initial stage and can be managed by adopting a healthy lifestyle. Healthy diet, physical activity and managing weight are some of the lifestyle changes that helps in reducing the risk of various conditions involved in metabolic syndrome such as cardiovascular disease or diabetes.
Exercise: Exercise helps reducing the weight and also improves insulin resistance. Further, exercise also helps managing the impaired fasting glucose and impaired glucose tolerance. This can be done through undergoing exercises to maintain belly fat and not try to sit at a single place for too long. Exercise increases the antioxidant capacity of the body, which helps neutralizing the oxidative stress developed in the body due to inflammatory mediators.
Diet: Diet plays an important role in preventing the occurrence of metabolic syndrome. As the diet helps us in providing energy and also diet is the source of various fats and oils. Thus, healthy foods should be incorporated in the diet to reduce the risk of various cardiovascular diseases. High fiber low fat diet is recommended in such patients. The fiber may be soluble such as in barley and oat and insoluble such as in wheat and corn.
Managing Obesity: Abdominal obesity or waist circumference or belly fat should be controlled to prevent the risk of development of metabolic syndrome. According to some researchers, abdominal obesity is the primary reason for metabolic syndrome which eventually gives rise to other risk factors. Abdominal obesity can be managed by undergoing physical training, general weight reducing exercising, and by maintaining healthy food habits.
Avoid Smoking: Smoking is an important component in increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease and atherosclerosis. In order to reduce risk of occurrence of factors responsible for metabolic syndrome, the person should quit smoking. This is particularly important for those patients who are suffering from at least one of the risk factors for metabolic syndrome. Smoking increases the risk of insulin resistance. Further some studies also indicate the positive relationship between smoking and obesity.
Limit Alcohol Intake: Alcohol is also a major contributor of metabolic syndrome. Alcohol increases the synthesis of triglycerides, which increases the risk of development of atherosclerosis. Alcohol also increases the risk of impaired fasting glucose. Studies have all conclude that drinking in higher quantities may also increase the risk of developing obesity and insulin resistance. Thus, the people who are risk of developing metabolic syndrome should limit intake of alcohol.
Medicine: When the lifestyle changes and other non-medicated therapies failed to provide substantiate effects on the parameters of conditions associated with metabolic syndrome, medications are used. These medicines depend upon the type of factor for metabolic syndrome to be managed. Drugs used for preventing metabolic syndrome may include anti-diabetic, anti-hypercholesterolemia, anti-hyperlipidemia, and anti-hypertensive. Further drugs used to reduce the risk of cardiac disease are also used. Anti-diabetic medicines such as metformin, glimepiride and voglibose can be used along with diet and exercise to manage the blood glucose level as well as insulin resistance. Cholesterol lowering drugs such as statins, fenofibrate, and niacin or bile acid sequestrants can also be used. Drugs used to manage cardiovascular diseases include blood pressure lowering agent such as beta blockers, calcium channel blockers and diuretics. Drugs such as aspirin can also be used to reduce the risk of thrombus formation.
Regular Checkup: Regular checkup for the patients who are at higher risk for developing metabolic syndrome should be done in order to monitor the condition and the development of other related factors.
Various approaches used for prevention of metabolic syndrome include healthy lifestyle, exercise, and diet, quitting smoking, limiting the quantity of alcohol, medications and regular checkup.