How Is Metabolic Syndrome Diagnosed?
To diagnose metabolic syndrome presence of three or more of these three components should be present according to the national health institute. They include central or abdominal obesity that is measured by waist circumference in men greater than 40 inches and in women greater than 35 inches. Triglycerides level greater than or equal to 150 milligrams per deciliter of blood. High density lipoprotein cholesterol in men less than 40 milligram per deciliter and in women less than 50 milligram per deciliter can contribute to development of metabolic disorders. Blood pressure greater than or equal to 130/85 millimeters of mercury and fasting glucose levels greater than or equal to 100 milligram per deciliter are diagnostic of metabolic syndrome.1
The complications of metabolic disorders include hardening of the arteries or atherosclerosis, diabetes, heart attack, kidney disease, stroke, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, peripheral artery disease and cardiovascular disease. Due to development of diabetes mellitus additional problems that can arise are eye damage (retinopathy), nerve damage (neuropathy), kidney disease and ischemia or gangrene of limbs.2
Once the diagnosis of metabolic syndrome is confirmed the goal of treatment is to reduce the risk of developing further health complications. Lifestyle changes are mostly recommended by the doctors that include a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables, nuts and whole grains. Getting a minimum of 30 minutes exercise in form of brisk walking or moderate activity is essential to prevent cardiovascular disease. Smoking should also be avoided to help the body heal and prevent further complications.
Managing optimum weight is also very important along with reduction of abdominal fat will help in prevention of metabolic disorders. To reduce blood pressure your doctor will prescribe low dose aspirin to help reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack.
The overall outlook of the patient with metabolic syndrome is quite good if they follow doctor’s advice. It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle to prevent serious complication from occurring in future. Eating right, exercising, and cessation of smoking and reducing weight will reduce the risk of developing metabolic syndrome.3
Metabolic syndrome includes a set of disease risk factors that increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes mellitus. It is not a specific condition but groups together a set of risk factors that are known to cause metabolic disorders. The disorders include high blood pressure, high fasting glucose levels, and excess body fat around the waist, which when combined increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes mellitus and stroke. It is also known as insulin resistance syndrome, syndrome X or dysmetabolic syndrome.4, 5
Metabolic syndrome has been known to start in childhood alongside obesity, dyslipedemia and high blood pressure.6 It is due to this reason that people now prefer to go for early screening to identify those with higher risk of cardiovascular disease. Due to early identification of higher risk people they can make target changes towards a healthier lifestyle and prevent problems in later life.
The exact cause of metabolic syndrome is not clear but most of the risk factors known are associated with insulin resistance. Having central obesity or being overweight is a major factor but abnormal blood lipid profile and high cholesterol levels along with increased blood pressure and pre-diabetic condition also contribute to metabolic disorders. Certain risk factors such as family history and ethnic background are unavoidable but a sedentary lifestyle and a diet high in fat and sugar promote development of obesity and metabolic disorders. Insulin resistance that is a feature of metabolic syndrome can lead to cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes mellitus, but it can also be assign of other conditions such as Cushing’s disease, polycystic ovarian syndrome, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and chronic kidney disease.7 Other problems those are associated with metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance and high blood sugar are low level inflammation and blood clotting disorders. They are also responsible for the development of cardiovascular disease.
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