Metabolic Syndrome and Type 2 Diabetes Risk

Metabolic Syndrome is one of the most prevalent health issues facing the industrialized world. Basically it is the name for the condition associated with the following combination of factors any 3 of which together are indicators of the condition:

1. Blood pressure = or above 130/85 mmHg

2. Fasting blood sugar (glucose) = or above 100 mg/dL

3. Increased waist circumference (central fat) in Men of 40 or more inches and in Women of 35 inches or more

4. Low HDL (also called good) cholesterol in Men – under 40 mg/dL and in Women – under 50 mg/dL

5. Triglycerides equal to or higher than 150 mg/dL

These factors ultimately are associated with a gain in fat tissue ratio to lean tissue, resulting from improper diet and lifestyle, which increases the overall fat content in the body, raising health risks significantly. This is not always seen in obvious visible obesity. In some cases persons whose body size is not necessarily significantly larger, will be what is called “over fat” while not necessarily overweight. However much of the time the visceral or central fat tissue is a visible sign of problems. This is not an aesthetic condition. How it looks is not the problem, but the actual quantitative effect on a persons health is. That is why what I do as a professional Lifestyle Educator is not a weight loss program per se, but a body composition program.

In 2001 the then Surgeon General of the United States David Satcher M.D. Ph.D. issued a report entitled Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Prevent and Decrease Overweight and Obesity”. This report indicated the significant health risks, premature death, disability, health care costs, and other factors associated with any overweight condition, and obesity. Just this year, the current Surgeon General Vice Admiral Regina M. Benjamin M.D. M.B.A. has issued a report entitled “The Surgeon General’s Vision for a Healthy and Fit Nation 2010” which explains her take on this concept with both reports calling the problem “epidemic”.

As a result of this overweight, obesity, and metabolic syndrome problem, the bodies of persons affected by these conditions will often develop a resistance to the proper utilization of insulin. As mentioned in a couple other posts about Type 2 Diabetes, this resistance tends to grow and ultimately can result in full blown type 2 diabetes if left unchecked.

Metabolic Syndrome is actually pretty easy to prevent though. With a system of properly scheduled meals, as well as well proportioned meal sizes you can keep your body fed, and reduce the risk of any of these conditions. One important thing to note is, if at all possible, never skip a meal! This seems counter-intuitive. Most people would think taking in less calories would help the body lose unwanted pounds. This is actually the opposite. When you skip meals, you force your body to basically eat itself to get the energy it needs, and you lose important lean mass which is calorie burning, metabolic tissue, since the protein in muscle is what is usually used to get this energy. You then eat a large meal being starving, and the body must store the unusable excess food eaten as fat. Your body needs a constant flow of nutrients and calories to keep going, so you need to eat to lose weight. So never skip meals!

If you live in the Orange County California area call me for a personal consulting session, and I can formulate a personal plan for your metabolism. Call me at 714-866-9649.