Considering one in five Canadians suffer from metabolic syndrome, how is it that so many people are unaware of what it is. Are you at risk of developing metabolic syndrome? If so, what does that mean for your health and what can you do to reduce your risk of future complications?
Metabolic Syndrome – A Modern Health Crisis
It’s no secret that many Canadians struggle to maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle. We know that certain foods and a lack of exercise are unhealthy, so why are chronic illnesses more prevalent than ever before? The rate of diabetes and heart disease are rising, accounting for a high mortality rate. So, what does metabolic syndrome have to do with these conditions?
Metabolic syndrome is a health condition that places you at risk for chronic, possibly fatal illnesses. If left untreated, this is when you begin to develop cardiovascular complications. In order to be diagnosed with this syndrome, you must display three of the following five symptoms:
- High blood pressure
- High blood glucose levels
- High triglyceride levels
- Low levels of HDL or ‘good’ cholesterol
- A large waist circumference
In a 2011 study, published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, it was found that the strongest predictor was age, as 39 percent of those aged 70-79 had metabolic syndrome, in comparison to 17 percent of those between the ages 18-39. Abdominal obesity was the most common symptom, especially amongst women, whereas men had higher fasting glucose levels than their female counterparts.
Do you believe that you or a loved one are at risk? If so, you can take action now, before more severe complications arise. Once you have developed heart disease or diabetes, you will have reached a point where your health takes a long-term turn, possibly experiencing significant and irreversible symptoms.
Good news, you can take action today. Get your body back on track to boost your health.
If you’re concerned that your health may be at-risk based on the criteria for metabolic syndrome, you can actively take action. In fact, if you lose 3 to 5 percent of your current weight, you could instantly lower your resting blood glucose and triglyceride levels, as well as your blood pressure and your LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol levels.
Easier said than done, right? It’s no secret that weight loss is an area that many Canadians struggle with, but being healthier does not need to be so complicated. Here are a few tips that you can implement into your daily routine, helping you change your habits and unhealthy behaviors.
- Say no to processed
With busy work schedules, it’s understandable that families want foods that are quick and convenient. Numerous studies have focused on the effects of fast and processed foods, reporting a direct link to metabolic syndrome. The truth is, these foods are not only packed with unhealthy additives, but they’re often void of any beneficial nutrients. They are typically full of trans fat, spiking cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Instead, here are 52 meals that can be made in less than 12 minutes.
- Avoid soda, especially diet
Soda is empty calories, sending your body into an undesirable state. High sugar consumption is a lead contributing factor regarding a wide range of diseases and health ailments. Although you may think that diet sodas are a healthier option, they’re actually worse. Artificial sweeteners have been associated with metabolic syndrome time and time again.
Within one 2009 study, daily diet soda consumption was linked to a 36 percent greater risk of metabolic syndrome and a shocking 67 percent increased risk of type 2 diabetes. Get into the habit of drinking more water and herbal tea. If you think water is boring, experiment with cinnamon sticks, apple slices, citrus fruits, and cucumber.
- Quit Smoking
Other than losing weight through a more balanced diet and more active lifestyle, smoking is another area to focus on in terms of metabolic syndrome. When you smoke, fatty acids begin to build up within your arteries, increasing your risk of heart disease and stroke. It is also known to increase blood pressure readings and insulin resistance. Smoking cessation will, of course, also significantly reduce your risk of cancer.
Far too many Canadians wait until serious health complications arise until they take action. Metabolic syndrome is a sign that you need to take immediate action while you are still in control. Actively work towards a healthier weight, as you consume a more nutrient-rich diet, exercise, and manage stress levels.