Metabolic Syndrome

Metabolic syndrome is a collection of health conditions that occur together involving high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess abdominal fat and abnormal cholesterol levels that increase the risk of heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes. It is commonly caused by lack of physical activity and poor diet, in which the excessive intake of sugar plays a major role in contributing to the development of metabolic syndrome.

Metabolic Syndrome Facts

The prevalence of metabolic syndrome increases with age, with around 1 in 3 adults aged 55-64 years having the condition.

Women are more likely to suffer from metabolic syndrome than men.

Metabolic syndrome is more prevalent in people of lower socio-economic status and those living in regional or remote Australia.

Sugar and Metabolic Syndrome

Having either one of these conditions does not mean that someone has metabolic syndrome, however the risk of developing complications is increased. The chance of developing more serious diseases is even higher in one that develops more of these conditions. Some of the complications of metabolic syndrome include stroke, heart disease and diabetes.

One of the risk factors of metabolic syndrome is having high sugar diets, which have become increasingly popular components of mainstream diets, often accommodating to both cost and taste. Ice cream by the beach with your friends sounds a lot more satisfying than fruits and vegetables to be fair. However, increased sugar intake can contribute to obesity.

Epidemologic studies have significantly found that the likelihood of developing cardiovascular diseases, type two diabetes melltius and overall obesity is heightened with increased sugar consumption. Increased sugar intake was found to translate to higher blood pressure levels, parallel to inflammation, hence increasing the likelihood of developing cardiovascular diseases with increased strain upon the body. Likewise, high sugar diets were also found to alter long term appetites within individuals, with the body no longer satisfied with the calories and nutrients provided by whole and healthy foods.

How to prevent metabolic syndrome?

Adopt a balanced diet with a variety of nutrient-dense foods and avoid processed foods with excessive saturated/trans fats.

Engage in regular physical activity or exercise to improve insulin sensitivity and lower blood pressure.

Maintain a healthy weight through a combination of healthy eating and regular exercise.