Your Life and Health - Metabolic Syndrome

Four of our biggest diseases—and our biggest killers—are the so called lifestyle diseases: obesity, heart disease, high blood-pressure, and type 2 diabetes. For years, doctors recognized that these diseases share many risk factors and even causes. Some even began to suspect that these diseases were in fact symptoms of a larger problem.

In 1988, Gerald Reaven, a researcher at Stanford University suggested that these lifestyle diseases were actually various manifestations of what he called Syndrome X.  He attributed everything to a root cause: elevated blood insulin levels and insulin resistance. His theories have since been well studied in medical literature. Today, syndrome X is known as metabolic syndrome.

Although metabolic syndrome continues to spread, we have the knowledge to stop it. It boils down to this: too much input and not enough output.  More time at the table, than time with our walking shoes on. You know what I’m saying?

Not only the amount of food we are eating, but the type of food we’re choosing to eat is harming us. Along with reducing quantity, we need to focus on the quality of our calories.

Unprocessed, nutrient-dense food, low in fat and sugar, but high in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber, doesn’t have to be boring or tasteless. Not only can these types of food be delicious, but they’ll satisfy you longer, and you’ll feel full sooner, meaning you’ll eat less as a result. 

Vegan and vegetarian diets have been shown to reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome, because they place a strong focus on plant foods. In contrast, research has repeatedly shown that the consumption of animal products increases the risk of many diseases, including metabolic syndrome. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and nuts are the fuels that our bodies were designed to use. Is it any wonder that they all reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome?

Besides the energy we put into our bodies, we need to focus on our output. You may have heard it a million times, but exercise is good for you. Besides burning off the extra calories we may have consumed, exercise helps combat disease.

When we choose to exercise and live active lifestyles, our bodies naturally become more responsive to insulin. Exercise also helps us lose weight. These two things combined mean that regular exercise is a very powerful means of fighting metabolic syndrome.

If you have metabolic syndrome, or are at risk of developing it, don’t wait to start treating it. The lifestyle changes you make will have a tremendous benefit. You’ll feel better and be healthier and happier as a result. 

Comments ( 6 ) Leave a Comment
  1. 1 Frank Sep 13, 2014, 3:03 PM PDT

    Considering input and output then is the prime point of reducing Metabolic Syndrome. What and how much we eat along with how much and intense the exercise is the focus of regaining our health profile as we mature.

  2. 2 Samuel Apr 17, 2015, 8:36 PM PDT

    Most people are just too busy to make time in adapting to these priceless life style changes. There is also a great need to practice temperance[as to what we eat…] for the calorific needs of the body to be in equilibrium.Frankly, syndrome X is really getting out of hands.
    Thanks for your piece.

  3. 3 Enoch May 12, 2015, 10:01 AM PDT

    The problem now is that most people have no problem taking in just anything as food and the world too is daily creating favorable conditions for inactivity.

  4. 4 Samuel May 12, 2015, 2:37 PM PDT

    Be not conformed to this world…

  5. 5 Gerry Feb 7, 2016, 9:24 AM PST

    does being on metformin and gillizide and omega 3 pills have anything to do with helping to cure diabetes?

  6. 6 Robert Aug 31, 2016, 9:37 AM PDT

    Gerry, those drugs are like band-aids to the problem, not the cure. The cure would be to prevent the disease. Now that it is too late, make the best of what’s left and thrive on a better way.

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