Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of medical conditions that occur together and increase the risk of developing various health problems, including cardiovascular disease, stroke, and diabetes. It is not a disease in itself, but a group of risk factors that include:
Abdominal obesity: Excess fat around the waistline (waist circumference of 40 inches or more for men and 35 inches or more for women).
High blood pressure: Blood pressure consistently equal to or higher than 130/85 mmHg.
High blood sugar: Fasting blood sugar level of 100 mg/dL or higher.
High triglyceride levels: Triglycerides are a type of fat found in the blood, with levels equal to or greater than 150 mg/dL.
Low HDL cholesterol: HDL is the "good" cholesterol that helps remove bad cholesterol from the body. Low HDL levels (less than 40 mg/dL for men and less than 50 mg/dL for women) increase the risk of heart disease.
Having any three of these five conditions indicates metabolic syndrome. The exact cause of metabolic syndrome is not known, but it is believed to be related to insulin resistance, a condition where the body cannot properly use insulin, a hormone that regulates blood sugar levels. Lifestyle changes, such as maintaining a healthy weight, regular exercise, and a balanced diet, can help manage metabolic syndrome and reduce the risk of associated health problems.