Metabolic Syndrome

What is Metabolic Syndrome?

A name for a group of risk factors that occur together and increase the risk for stroke and type 2 diabetes.
Metabolic syndrome is becoming more and more common in the United States. Researchers are not sure whether the syndrome is due to one single cause, but all of the risks for the syndrome are related to obesity. Symptoms of metabolic syndromes are extra weight around your waist (central or abdominal obesity)

Risk Factors:

  • Extra weight around the middle and upper parts of the body (central obesity). The body may be described as "apple-shaped."
  • Insulin resistance, in which the body cannot use insulin effectively. Insulin is needed to help control the amount of sugar in the body. As a result, blood sugar and fat levels rise.
  • Aging
  • Genes that make you more likely to develop this conditionexternal image Metabolic-syndrome.png
  • Hormone changes
  • Lack of exercise

  • Excess blood clotting
  • Low levels of inflammation throughout the body

Signs and tests

According to the American Heart Association and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, metabolic synd

rome is present if you have three or more of the following signs:
  • Blood pressure equal to or higher than 130/85 mmHg
  • Fasting blood sugar (glucose) equal to or higher than 100 mg/dL
  • Large waist circumference (length around the waist):
    • Men - 40 inches or more
    • Women - 35 inches or more

  • Low HDL cholesterol:
    • Men - under 40 mg/dL
    • Women - under 50 mg/dL

  • Triglycerides equal to or higher than 150 mg/dL
Tests that may be done to diagnose metabolic syndrome include:
  • Blood pressure measurement
    Glucose test

    external image Metabolic-syndrome-factors-101.png

  • HDL cholesterol level

  • LDL cholesterol level
  • Total cholesterol level
    Triglyceride level


The goal of treatment is to reduce your risk of heart disease and diabetes. Your doctor will recommend lifestyle changes or medicines to help reduce your blood pressure, LDL cholesterol, and blood sugar.
Recommendations include:
  • Lose weight. The goal is to lose between 7% and 10% of your current weight. You will probably need to eat 500 - 1,000 fewer calories per day.
  • Get 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise, such as walking, 5 - 7 days per week.
  • Lower your cholesterol using weight loss, e

    xercise, and cholesterol lowering medicines, if needed.
  • Lower your blood pressure using weight loss, exercise, and medicine, if needed.
Some people may need to take daily low-dose aspirin.
People who smoke should quit.



Preventing (and managing) the condition involves:
  • Eating a diet low in fat, with a variety of fruits, vegetables, and whole-grain products
  • Getting regular exercise, at least 30 minutes of moderate activity almost every day
  • Losing weight so that your body mass index (BMI) is less than 25
  • Managing blood pressure and blood sugar
  • Not smoking
  • Trying to include fish, preferably oily fish, in your diet atleast twice a week.

Work Cited