WHAT IS METABOLIC SYNDROME?
Metabolic Syndrome is a group of diseases in which multiple risk factors for heart disease are clustered. It has become an epidemic in developed and developing countries due to changes in lifestyle, leading to an increase in the frequency of heart disease associated with atherosclerosis. Metabolic Syndrome, which is seen in people who are overweight and have a high waist circumference, is a precursor to diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. This disease is becoming widespread in our country, as it is all over the world. Hardening and blockage of blood vessels in patients with Metabolic Syndrome increase the risk of stroke and heart attack.
What are the crıterıa for Metabolıc Syndrome?
Metabolic Syndrome has different definitions from different organizations. The latest agreed-upon diagnostic criteria are increased waist circumference (specific to the community and country), high triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol, high blood pressure, and high fasting blood glucose. At least three of these parameters must be present for a diagnosis:
- Waist circumference (Women: ≥80 cm; Men: ≥94 cm),
- High fasting blood sugar (≥100 mg/dL) or type 2 diabetes,
- High blood pressure (≥85/130 mm Hg) or hypertension,
- Low HDL cholesterol (men: <40 mg/dL; women: <50 mg/dL),
- High triglycerides (≥150 mg/dL).
What dıseases ıs Metabolıc Syndrome a precursor to?
People with Metabolic Syndrome have a 5-fold higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes and a 2-fold higher risk of developing atherosclerotic heart disease in the future than those without this syndrome. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, polycystic ovary syndrome, sleep apnea syndrome, gallstones, gastroesophageal reflux, depression, and asthma are also considered to be among the conditions associated with Metabolic Syndrome.
Metabolıc Syndrome ın our country
Metabolic Syndrome is present in a quarter of the world’s population. According to studies conducted in Turkey, nearly one-third of the population over 20 years of age has Metabolic Syndrome.
Why ıs the frequency of Metabolıc Syndrome ıncreasıng?
The lack of physical activity, sedentary lifestyle, excessive nutrition, and waist circumference fat deposition triggered by obesity frequency are thought to play a role in the increasing frequency of Metabolic Syndrome, as well as the high frequency of Metabolic Syndrome components such as hypertension, glucose metabolism disorders, and dyslipidemia.
In studies conducted in our country, it was observed that Turkish adults spent about 6 hours a day sitting, regardless of weekdays or weekends, and had a high daily energy intake, without a rural-urban distinction. These findings suggest that poor lifestyle is one of the most important factors in the increasing prevalence of Metabolic Syndrome and waist circumference fat deposition in our population.
What measures can we take agaınst Metabolıc Syndrome?
The foundation of preventing Metabolic Syndrome is adopting a healthy lifestyle. If Metabolic Syndrome is diagnosed, controlling heart and vascular disease risk factors, weight loss, and blood sugar control are important. Regular physical activity, a healthy diet, and not smoking are also important in preventing Metabolic Syndrome.
TRANSITIONING TO A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE IN THE FIRST STAGE
- Physical exercise: The goal is to “force” cells to use more glucose and promote weight loss. It is recommended to engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise at least five days a week (such as brisk walking, swimming, slow jogging, or cycling).
- Changing the diet (balanced and healthy eating): A limited saturated fat and rich complex carbohydrate diet is recommended for people with Metabolic Syndrome. Recently, balanced diet models like the Mediterranean diet have been reported to be associated with a decrease in the frequency of metabolic disorders such as obesity, dyslipidemia, and high blood pressure, as well as coronary heart disease and different types of cancer. The Mediterranean diet is a diet rich in fiber, complex carbohydrates, and monounsaturated fats, and poor in saturated fats, including vegetables, fruits, legumes, olive oil, walnuts, nuts, and grapes.