What I Tell My Patients About Metabolic Syndrome
Many people are familiar with terms like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and hypertension. However, you might not know that when these conditions occur together, they could be called metabolic syndrome. According to the American Heart Association, metabolic syndrome affects almost 25 percent of adults. It’s a medical condition that often affects people as they get older.
What Is Metabolic Syndrome?
For years we have not had very good explanation to why metabolic syndrome exists.
However, researchers are starting to realize that this condition may be correlated with an inability to store fat properly. If the fat isn’t stored in the hips and thighs, it can accumulate around vital organs, such as the liver, muscle, and pancreas. This can lead to a vicious feed-forward cycle of inflammation in these tissues and glands eventually leading type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease.
Metabolic Syndrome And Weight
Thin people can have metabolic syndrome, commonly known as the skinny fat. However, it affects obese patients at a greater rate, data Data suggests that only five percent of people at a healthy weight have metabolic syndrome, whereas about 60 percent of obese individuals are affected by the disorder.
In a sense, it unlocks your cells’ ability to utilize the glucose properly. It also helps your body store sugars as usable energy in the form of fat and glycogen.
Once the sugars enter your cells, your blood glucose levels fall. This tells your body to stop producing insulin, and everything becomes balanced again.
If you have insulin resistance, your body doesn’t respond normally when the pancreas secretes insulin. It’s almost as if your cells ignore the elevated insulin levels. Your cells don’t suck up the sugar for energy, and the glucose remains in your bloodstream.
What causes this insulin resistance? Most people think about poor lifestyle and genetics as two major reasons. What we do not think about are mitochondrial toxins, gut microbial imbalance, altered body composition, and chronically activated immune system which continues to increase inflammation. is made you are
If you have insulin resistance, you’re at a greater risk of developing cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, stroke, fatty liver disease, reproductive issues and cancer. Insulin resistance also causes inflammation, which is associated with many health issues.
Treating Metabolic Syndrome
The causes and effects of metabolic syndrome are a chicken-and-egg scenario. Although weight, inflammation, and insulin resistance are associated with metabolic syndrome, it’s hard to gauge where the problem started. Because metabolic syndrome is related to a variety of health problems, it should be treated in an integrative manner.
Many doctors begin by telling patients to eat healthfully and exercise. These behavioral changes are cornerstones of a healthy lifestyle.
What you eat might play a role in metabolic syndrome whether or not changing your diet causes you to lose weight. Eating an abundance of fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes, seeds, whole grains and healthy fats with a moderate amount of plant or animal protein has been shown to improve symptoms of metabolic syndrome. Scientists say that what you eat can be more effective than medications in improving symptoms of this condition.
Toxins and endocrine disruptors also interfere with intercellular communication and can influence metabolic syndrome markers. Incorporating specific nutrients and compounds into the diet may also be important
Management of metabolic syndrome is a multipronged approach giving generic advice such as, “You should eat better and exercise more,” is no longer acceptable. It is advisable you work with a Functional medicine physician who can help personalize the lifestyle intervention.