It has been reported that one in three people in the U.S.A. suffer from metabolic syndrome, which is a very dangerous combination of medical problems that can lead to an increased risk of developing diabetes or heart disease. However, the research shows that it is heart disease that one is most likely to have when suffering from metabolic syndrome.
Metabolic syndrome is diagnosed when a person suffers from at least three out of these conditions: abdominal obesity, high serum triglycerides, high blood pressure, low high-density lipoprotein (HDL) and/or elevated plasma glucose. While the general prevalence of this syndrome is 34 percent in the U.S., this increases with age. Thus, about one in two people who are 60 or older suffer from it. Study author Dr. Robert Wong, who is an assistant clinical professor at University of California, San Francisco believes these numbers are extremely alarming and they are likely to place an enormous responsibility on the health care system.
The data collected from U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for almost a decade (starting from 2003 and ending with 2012) was analyzed by the team of experts in order to determine what the rate of people suffering from the metabolic syndrome is. Their analysis revealed that the numbers have slightly grown from 2003 to 2012. While in 2011-2012 the rate was 34 percent, in 2002-2003, that rate was 33 percent. Another finding is that most people who have this condition as obese.
However, what was more interesting was the fact that older people have a higher risk of developing the condition than younger ones. The researchers showed that people whose ages varied from 20 to 39 year only had 18 percent chances of suffering from metabolic syndrome, while those over 60 had around 47 percent chances. Of the latter, 50 percent were women.
An explanation for this might be that people have a tendency to become more sedentary as they grow older. Therefore, obesity and resistance to insulin are more likely to take over and become risk factors.
In order to prevent this, a healthier diet and exercise should be part of our daily routines no matter how old we are. Health experts advise us to avoid eating sugary beverages and foods and eat home-cooked meals instead of junk food. Prevention is always the best and this should start from an early age, with healthier school meals and more dynamic daily activities.
The study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association on Tuesday, the 19th of May 2015.
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