What is metabolic syndrome?
Metabolic syndrome is a group of health problems that involve your metabolism and give you a higher chance of having heart disease Overview of Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) The heart is a muscle that pumps blood. Like all muscles, the heart needs a steady supply of blood to work. Blood that pumps through the heart doesn't feed the heart muscle. Instead the heart... read more , stroke Stroke A stroke is a sudden brain problem that happens when a blood vessel in your brain either gets blocked or breaks open and bleeds. As with all organs in the body, the brain needs oxygen and nutrients... read more , and diabetes Diabetes Diabetes is a disease in which your blood sugar (glucose) levels are too high. You get diabetes if your body's normal way of controlling blood sugar isn't working right. There are 2 types of... read more . Metabolism refers to all the different chemical processes that go on in your body.
Metabolic syndrome is very common in the United States. People with metabolic syndrome have:
A lot of fat around their waist
What causes metabolic syndrome?
The cause of metabolic syndrome isn't known.
You're more likely to get metabolic syndrome if you store fat around your belly (you're apple-shaped) instead of your hips (you're pear-shaped). This happens in:
Metabolic syndrome can affect children and teens as well.
What are the symptoms of metabolic syndrome?
Metabolic syndrome itself causes no symptoms. But you may have symptoms of its complications, such as:
How can doctors tell if I have metabolic syndrome?
Metabolic syndrome has many different definitions. Doctors most often diagnose you with metabolic syndrome if you have a large waist—40 inches (102 centimeters) or more in men and 35 inches (89 centimeters) or more in women—and 2 or more of the following:
High fasting blood sugar level (100 or higher)
High blood pressure (130/85 or higher OR you are taking blood pressure medicine)
High amount of fats in your blood (triglycerides of 150 or higher)
A low level of HDL ("good" cholesterol)
How do doctors treat metabolic syndrome?
Doctors will help you lose weight by having you eat a healthier diet and exercise more. They'll also give you medicines to treat any diseases you have, such as: