Brought to you by Cipla
- High blood pressure
- High blood sugar levels or insulin resistance
- Body fat accumulating around the waist
- Irregular cholesterol levels
WHY IS METABOLIC SYNDROME DANGEROUS?Back to top
According to a recent statement by the World Health Organisation (WHO), heart disease and strokes are identified as leading causes of fatalities in South Africa.
HOW IS METABOLIC SYNDROME DIAGNOSED?Back to top
WHAT ARE THE CONTRIBUTING FACTORS?Back to top
- High intake of sugar and refined carbohydrates
- Excessive alcohol consumption
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMSBack to top
THE HEALTH IMPACTS OF EACH CONDITIONBack to top
Obesity is thought to trigger changes to the chemical processes of the body. These changes cause fat tissue to release fat molecules into the blood, which can affect the cells that respond to insulin, thereby reducing the body’s reaction to insulin (insulin sensitivity).
Studies suggest that abdominal fat prompts the release of chemicals that cause the body to become red, hot, swollen and pain-ridden, which could lead to lowered insulin sensitivity and eventual resistance.
INSULIN RESISTANCEBack to top
Insulin resistance is the precursor to type II diabetes, whereby the beta cells of the pancreas can no longer produce enough insulin to overcome insulin resistance, spiking blood sugar levels.
HYPERTENSIONBack to top
Risk of heart disease: The coronary arteries leading to the heart become progressively narrow from a build-up of plaque (fat, cholesterol and other substances). When the blood flow of the heart muscle is interrupted, it is deprived of oxygen and nutrients, causing a heart attack.
Risk of a stroke: Damaged and weakened blood vessels of the brain, or clots that are formed in the arteries of the brain, obstruct blood flow, potentially causing a stroke.
CHOLESTEROLBack to top
Cholesterol is an important waxy substance that originates from the liver and diet in humans and animals, which forms a structural part of many hormones and cells. An excess of bad cholesterol (LDL and triglycerides) and a lack of good cholesterol (HDL) may, however, lead to heart disease in the following ways:
Hardening of the arteries: Too much LDL cholesterol in your body can accumulate in your arteries, clogging them and making them less flexible.
Increased risk of heart failure: Due to the hardened arteries, the heart has to work harder to pump blood through the body.
Heart attack: The build-up of plaque in the coronary arteries can disrupt the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the heart muscle.
A piece of plaque can also block blood flow to the brain, or dislodge and form a clot, leading to a stroke.
IMPACT OF STRESSBack to top
- Increased blood sugar levels and insulin resistance
- Weight gain
- An impaired immune system
- Elevated blood pressure
- Abnormal cholesterol levels
MANAGING METABOLIC SYNDROMEBack to top
Appropriate and aggressive therapy is essential for reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Lifestyle changes should be implemented – exercise, healthy diet, no smoking, low alcohol intake and stress management.
Prescribed medication should aid in combatting insulin resistance, obesity, hypertension and abnormal cholesterol levels.
1.The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, Volume 89, Issue 6, 1 June 2004, Pages 2595–2600, Scott M. Grundy, Obesity, Metabolic Syndrome, and Cardiovascular Disease 2.Journal of Cardiology Research and Practice, March 2014, Jaspinder Kaur, A Comprehensive Review on Metabolic Syndrome 3.Journal of Metabolic Syndrome, open access, December 2017, Volume 6, Issue 4, Metabolic Syndrome 4. JRSM Cardiovascular Disease, March 2016, Thang S Han, Mike EJ Lean, A clinical perspective of obesity, metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease 5.European Heart Journal Supplements, Volume 7, Issue suppl.D, 1 June 2005, Pages D3–D5, George Alberti, Introduction to the metabolic syndrome 6. Medscape, March 2017, Stanley S Wang, MD, Metabolic Syndrome 7. SA Heart, 2010, Volume 7, Number 3, Martin T, MPE, Cardiovascular disease in South Africa 8. JRSM Cardiovascular Disease, 2016, Thang S Hang and Mike EJ Lean, A clinical perspective of obesity, metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease 9. Diabetes Care 2004 Dec; 27(12): 3009-3016, Zachary T. Bloomgarden, MD, Dyslipidemia and the Metabolic Syndrome 10. PLOS One, August 2015, Miroslaw Janczura, Grazyna Bochenek , Roman Nowobilski , Jerzy Dropinski , Katarzyna Kotula-Horowitz , Bartosz Laskowicz , Andrzej Stanisz , Jacek Lelakowski , Teresa Domagala, The Relationship of Metabolic Syndrome with Stress, Coronary Heart Disease and Pulmonary Function – An Occupational Cohort-Based Study 11. Journal of Diabetes Research, 2015, Joseph Fomusi Ndisang, Sharad Rastogi, and Alfredo Vannacci, Insulin Resistance, Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes, and Related Complications 2015 12. The South African Medical Journal, Vol 102, No 11 (2012), Rajiv Timothy Erasmus, David Jonah Soita, Mogamat Shafick Hassan, Ernesto Blanco-Blanco, Zelda Vergotine, Andre P Kengne, Tandi Edith Matsha, High prevalence of diabetes mellitus and metabolic syndrome in a South African coloured population: Baseline data of a study in Bellville, Cape Town 13. JEMDSA 2017 Volume 22 Number 1 (Supplement 1) Page S1-S196, SEMDSA 2017 Guidelines for the Management of Type 2 diabetes mellitus 14. Cardiovasc J Afr. 2014 Nov-Dec; 25(6): 288–294, YK Seedat, South African hypertension practice guideline 2014
For more health information
Click on the body area you want to know more about. Select a related health topic from the menu
WHAT IS CHOLESTEROL? A fat molecule that is white, insoluble and waxy Essential for many metabolic processes There are different types of cholesterol HDL is the ‘good’ cholesterol LDL is the ‘bad’ cholesterol Triglycerides, a type of fat, also form part of the lipid profile Eating foods rich in saturated fats will increase the amount…