As many as one in three American adults may have metabolic syndrome, according to medical studies. This syndrome is a collection of factors that increase a person’s risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and stroke. Fortunately, it is treatable — and preventable.
Children also are increasingly being diagnosed with metabolic syndrome, and a medical study released this month showed that children with this syndrome scored significantly lower on standardized tests compared to children without metabolic syndrome.
There are different definitions for metabolic syndrome, but the most commonly used come from The National Cholesterol Education Program and the International Diabetes Foundation:
A person with three or more of these factors is considered to have metabolic syndrome.
Reduce your risk:
A healthy lifestyle is the most important factor in preventing metabolic syndrome. It’s also the first line of treatment for people who already have it.
That includes:A heart-healthy diet. A healthy body weight.
If lifestyle changes aren’t enough to control risk factors, your doctor may discuss medication options to treat specific conditions.