You’ve probably heard of it, but do you know what it is? Metabolic syndrome or Syndrome X as it can also be referred to is a cluster of metabolic process that have become abnormal due to lifestyle and dietary choices.
- Type 2 diabetes
- Cardiovascular disease.
The health factors:
- Insulin resistance
- Elevated blood pressure
- Increased visceral fat (deep abdominal fat surrounding your organs)
- Chronic stress
- Sleep apnea
All of the above health factors are issues on their own but the accumulation of them all lead to metabolic syndrome and serious health implications.
So, what causes metabolic syndrome?
To put it broadly, lifestyle factors. Inactivity and the accumulation of body fat. From a visual perspective you could be imagining someone who is hugely obese, and you wouldn’t be wrong. However, this is not the only demographics that is at risk and, in my opinion, this is worse simply for the reason they are unaware or actually ignorant to the facts.
Brenda is 45yrs old and as far as she can remember has always struggled with her weight. For years she has done every diet going and every new exercise fad that makes it way on to the market. There have been times where she has lost weight but only to gain it back soon after. This yoyo effect plagues her life and she gradually becomes more stressed and resentful. Not only to the diets and fads but to herself. She believes she’s different to everyone else and that her body is an anomaly that is destined to be out of shape.
At 45yrs old Brenda has gone through a lot of diets and her weight has fluctuated tirelessly the whole time. Not only is Brenda mentally drained but she has caused a great deal of internal damage. These excessive diets and exercise fads have played havoc with her metabolism. And although Brenda isn’t classified clinically obese she is now fatter and more out of shape than she has ever been. She struggles to lose weight and every time she does it seems to come back quicker than it left. But the main issue is that her health is now at severe risk.
Although Brenda is a fictional character, her situation is not. Brenda has neglected her health and lifestyle in the pursuit of weight loss. And although Brenda may feel she has been doing some good with her diets, she has actually done more harm than good. She will have been jumping from extreme calorie deficits (diet & restriction) to extreme calorie surpluses (binging). This yoyo effect has caused long-term weight gain.
Metabolic syndrome is a major cause for concern. But it can be reversed. Lifestyle modifications should be made along with regular assessment of health markers such as weight, body fat, blood pressure and fasting glucose testing.
There is also no quick fix. Metabolic issues accumulate over years of lifestyle abuse. If you believe this can be rectified in twelve short weeks you will be deeply disappointed. However, if you make and sustain long-term lifestyle modifications the results you could achieve can be truly outstanding.
Many or our clients have gone through this exact scenario and we have worked with them to develop new sustainable and healthy lifestyles. But the most important part is that we have taken them through a journey of education and implementation. This journey can truly be a life changing experience.
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Kaur. J. (2014), A Comprehensive Review on Metabolic Syndrome, Cardiol Res Pract. 2014;2014:943162
Swarup S, Zeltser R. Metabolic Syndrome. [Updated 2018 Oct 3]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2018 Jan