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If you have not yet heard of metabolic syndrome, you might be surprised to hear that it is a serious health condition that has been on the rise in recent years. Without treatment, metabolic syndrome can lead to heart disease and associated illnesses like stroke and heart attack.

Are you afraid that you might be at risk for metabolic syndrome? Do you think you might be facing heart disease in the future? This guide will help you figure out what steps you can take to prevent and treat metabolic syndrome.

1. Risk Factors of Metabolic Syndrome

Five main risks factors are associated with metabolic syndrome. While the presence of one symptom may not be enough to indicate that you have the condition, exhibiting several of these symptoms can say a lot. The first risk factor is a large waistline. Abdominal obesity occurs when you store more fat around the waist than around other parts of the body.

If you have high levels of fat, specifically triglycerides, in your blood, you might be at risk for metabolic syndrome. You may also be at risk if your doctor has recommended that you take medications for triglycerides. Another risk factor may be a low level of HDL cholesterol in the body. HDL is considered good cholesterol, and it plays an important role in your body.

High blood pressure is another risk because it can cause damage to the heart. If your doctor has prescribed blood pressure medication, this may be an indicator that you are at risk. Finally, a high fasting blood sugar may also indicate you are at risk for metabolic syndrome. It may also be an indicator of diabetes.

2. Causes of Metabolic Syndrome

There are several key causes linked to metabolic syndrome, and many are related to lifestyle habits. One cause of metabolic syndrome is stress. Stress leads to serious consequences because it is linked to hormonal issues that may influence your body's cortisol levels and weight. Some psychiatric illnesses can behave in the same way.

While some people of normal or healthy weight may have metabolic syndrome, obesity is one major cause linked to the condition. Finally, it is important to consider the lifestyle of the patient. Those who are sedentary are more likely to develop the condition than those who are very active.

3. Treatment for Metabolic Syndrome

Metabolic syndrome is treated in a number of different ways depending on what the doctor thinks is best for your health. The ultimate goal is to lower your risk of heart disease.

Some lifestyle changes your doctor may suggest for you include partaking in a healthier diet and being more physically active. Managing stress effectively and setting a target for weight loss are both important. Medication is one solution many doctors will consider. Medications may be used to treat issues that go along with metabolic syndrome like diabetes and high cholesterol.

4. Prevention of Metabolic Syndrome

If you are concerned that you exhibit some of the risk factors but don't quite have metabolic syndrome, there are still some steps you can take under the guidance of your doctor.

Some are lifestyle changes you can make today, like eating more fresh fruits and vegetables. Eating fewer processed foods is ideal. You can also become more active, engaging in at least 150 minutes of exercise per week. One of the biggest goals for metabolic syndrome patients will be weight loss to get to a healthy range.

Cedar Grove Medical Associates LLC offers medical care for metabolic syndrome. Whether you think you might have metabolic syndrome or you are preparing for the future, seeing the doctor to develop a plan of action is beneficial