metabolic syndrome causes, treatments, symptoms

Metabolic Syndrome: A Complete Guide to Causes and Treatment

Metabolic syndrome, otherwise referred to as syndrome X or insulin resistance, is a condition that occurs as a result of other contradictions.

These contradictions may result in type 2 diabetes, stroke, cardiovascular complications, and many other diseases.

This condition manifests due to conditions like midsection obesity, increased blood pressure, fasting blood glucose, and others.

If this condition is left unmanaged, it can drastically decrease the quality of life.

What is Metabolic Syndrome?

Metabolic syndrome is a group of metabolic conditions that play out in an individual.

Some of these complications include cholesterol abnormalities, high blood pressure, high risk of blood clots, and insulin resistance.

Most susceptible individuals are often suffering from overweight and obesity.


Metabolic conditions have always been a known propelling factor of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Metabolic syndrome is likewise known as insulin resistance syndrome, dysmetabolic syndrome, or syndrome X. 

Insulin resistance means the reduced ability of cells to react to the influence of insulin in enhancing the circulation of sugar glucose.

This circulation involves movements from the blood into the muscles and several other tissues. 

Symptoms of Metabolic Syndrome

There are quite a number of factors that come together to characterize this condition.

Metabolic syndrome is not considered a disease or disorder in itself.

Many susceptible individuals are regarded as having this condition (Metabolic Syndrome)when any of these three or other symptoms are shown: 

Abnormal Glucose Tolerance or Pre-diabetes

One study has found that a significant proportion of people with inebriated fasting glucose or glucose tolerance are most likely to suffer from diabetes. 

Pre-diabetes involves inebriated glucose tolerance and inebriated fasting glucose.

These conditions play out when one’s glucose level appears to be higher than expected but not as high as diabetic level. A lifestyle change can serve as a reliable change.

Hypertension or Increased Blood Pressure

According to research, a person develops hypertension when the blood pressure gets beyond 140/90mmHg. Several factors can be responsible for this condition.

These factors include kidney disorder, genetics, cardiovascular disease, or lifestyle. 

High blood pressure can also serve as a responsible cause of conditions like stroke, kidney disease, and cardiovascular disease. 

The usual blood pressure falls to 130/80 mmHg or less in situations where other diseases are evident.

Notwithstanding, every individual has some peculiarities. It is advisable to consult a health provider for medical expertise and check-ups.

Causes of Metabolic Syndrome

There are quite a few factors that are tagged as the causes or motivating factors of metabolic syndrome conditions.

Some of these common causes include: 

1. Genetic Factor 

As it is known that genetics have quite an impactful effect on most health-related conditions, its contribution to the manifestation of metabolic syndrome cannot be overlooked. 

One research has shown that genetic factors influence the response of individuals to the syndrome.

People with a history of early heart disease, hypertension, and type 2 diabetes are more prone to have metabolic syndrome.

2. Environmental Factors 

The environment has the ability to influence a person’s chance of developing metabolic syndrome, just as genetics does.

Environmental factors like sedentary lifestyle, non-stop weight gain, and reduced activity level add to the risk of an individual developing this condition.

One study found that metabolic syndrome is evident in about 60% of people who are obese, 9% of the population of people with normal body weight, and 22% of those individuals considered overweight. 


Grown-ups who consistently gain more than 5lbs a year increase the risk of having metabolic syndrome by at least 45%.

3. Abdominal Obesity

A study in the health journal reviewed that obesity may come before the development of the metabolic syndrome.

4. Excessive Consumption of Carbohydrates

A study has proven that excessive intake of carbohydrates stands as a background of obesity. 

Ultimately, there is an essential need for balance in diets. Monounsaturated fats such as mustard oil and nuts together with multiple fresh green vegetables and fruits, need to be incorporated. 

Treatments for Metabolic Syndrome

Today, one study shows that more than 50% of the total population of people in Australia suffer from at least one of the metabolic syndrome conditions.

Preventing or managing a case of metabolic syndrome can be easily provided one follows guidelines.

Significant ways of treating metabolic syndrome include:

1. Dietary Modifications

Including enough vegetables, fruits, and whole-grain foods in one’s diet is of great importance. These foods are a good replacement for food high in fat.

Research has shown that there should be an adequate intake of iron, calcium, and folate while reducing caloric intake.

To reduce weight or avoid overweight, one must cut down on fatty and sugary food consumption.

Avoid saturated fats always concentrated in processed foods, full cream dairy, and meat. Reduce or possibly stay away from alcohol or alcoholic drinks. 

2. Increased Exercise

Regular exercise can help improve the health and immune system. Your exercise can be in any form that guarantees your convenience. 

Make sure to exercise for not less than 30 minutes every day. Exercise for at least five days out of seven a week. 

Endeavor not to sit down idle. Stand up from time to time or go for a short walk in the house or neighborhood. 

Research proves that regular exercise has potential benefits on blood pressure, insulin sensitivity, and cholesterol levels.

With or without weight loss, exercise possesses positive contributions in treating metabolic syndrome.

3. Stop Smoking 

Smoking only puts you at risk. It significantly propagates your risk of cancer, quick death, stroke, lung disease, and cardiovascular problems.

A study in the Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism reviewed that exposure to certain components of tobacco can complicate metabolic syndrome conditions. 

Calling it to quit will earn you multiple health advantages, most especially in patients with metabolic syndrome. 


4. Medication

Although the positive contributions of lifestyle and dietary modifications can not be underscored in treating metabolic syndrome, in some cases, medication proves to be the necessary remedy. 

One study has found that pharmacological therapy proves effective in controlling obesity.

Usually, some patients may have to take lipid-reducing medications or antihypertensive medications to keep blood pressure in check. 

In rare cases, some patients may be required to combine both.

What is of utmost importance is to reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke, or even diabetes. 

However, of all the above-listed likely treatments for metabolic syndrome, it is quintessential to visit one’s doctor.

This way, the doctor can help determine the most suitable management processes.

Related: Avoid These 7 Common Diet Mistakes That Slow Metabolism

Can You Reverse Metabolic Syndrome?

Just like every other challenging condition, metabolic syndrome can be prevented or even reversed. Choosing a healthy lifestyle should do the trick. 

A healthy lifestyle combined with time-to-time visits to the doctors for proper and constant re-evaluation is important.

Evaluation of the lipoprotein levels, sugar levels, HbA1C, and all other necessary tests necessitated by the doctor.

Doctors may introduce medications to treat this syndrome in some cases.

Cases when healthcare providers have the conviction that lifestyle modifications are not working out as expected.

These medications help to keep high blood sugar, unhealthy cholesterol levels, and high blood pressure in check.

Foods to Eat for Metabolic Syndrome

As one of the ways of treating metabolic syndrome, you need to keep track of what you eat.


To improve or manage your condition successfully, you must eat fiber-rich foods, potassium, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Some of these foods include the following:

Fibre-Rich Foods 

This class of food helps you to reduce the risk of heart conditions. Fiber-rich food reduces bad cholesterol in your body. It directly balances your sugar level. Examples of this food are: 

  • Dried fruit
  • Couscous 
  • Fresh and frozen vegetables
  • Oat 
  • Whole-grain bread
  • Barley
  • Cinnamon powder
  • Lentils 
  • Brown rice 
  • Bran 

Potassium-Rich Foods

Food rich in potassium improves blood pressure.

This class of food acts as a defensive factor against sodium. Sodium is known for its ability to increase blood pressure. Examples of potassium-rich foods are: 

  • Bananas 
  • Orange
  • Lentils 
  • Oat bran
  • Dates
  • Yogurt 
  • Cantaloupe 
  • Collard greens 
  • Potatoes with skin 
  • Mushrooms 
  • Tomatoes 

Omega-3 Fatty Foods

Omega-3 fatty foods give essential nutrients that help to keep the heart and blood vessels in great working condition.

They help to improve the HDL cholesterol levels in the body. These fats can be found in: 

  • Walnuts 
  • Pumpkin seeds 
  • Pine nuts 
  • Almonds
  • Mackerel 
  • Tuna 
  • Salmon
  • Avocados 
  • Navy beans 
  • Trout 


It is quite imperative to take cognizance that this syndrome is attached to several other conditions. Conditions such as high blood pressure, high blood sugar, and diabetes. 

Susceptible people should subscribe to a healthier lifestyle.

Exercise regularly and adjust dietary intake to decrease chances of developing metabolic syndrome purposely.