If you are overweight, the risk for health problems is probable. If you are obese, the risk for health problems is almost guaranteed. A cluster of risk factors related to obesity might be the metabolic syndrome that can lead to obesity related illness.
Obesity related illnesses include gallstones, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, coronary artery disease, stroke, and sleep apnea.
What is Metabolic Syndrome?
According to the American Heart Association, 47 million Americans have metabolic syndrome. That’s nearly one out of every six people. Yet while metabolic syndrome is a condition that so many people have, few actually know what it is. Simply put, metabolic syndrome is a cluster of risk factors that increase the chances for coronary artery disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.
Risk factors for metabolic syndrome include:
- An apple shape, defined as excess weight around the middle (belly fat) and upper body parts,
- Insulin resistance,
- Increased blood pressure,
- Low HDL cholesterol,
- Aging, genetics, and/or changes in hormones,
- and lack of exercise.
In addition, those who have metabolic syndrome may have excess blood clotting and low levels of inflammation.
First Line Treatment
Treatment for metabolic syndrome includes losing 7-10% of your current weight, 30 minutes of robust exercise 5-7 days per week, and losing enough weight to lower cholesterol and blood pressure.
Although the treatment recommendations for metabolic syndrome are logical, they often end in failure. Many whom have reached the point of metabolic syndrome have already attempted various weight loss programs and been unsuccessful.
Effect of Bariatric Surgery
If diet and exercise attempts fail, you may wish to discuss weight loss surgery with a bariatric surgeon. Gastric bypass surgery for resolving metabolic syndrome has been proven successful and yielded impressive results.
The Mayo Clinic conducted a population-based, retrospective study of patients evaluated for bariatric surgery between January 1, 1990, and December 31, 2003, who had metabolic syndrome (MetS). Of these patients, 180 underwent the gastric bypass surgery, and 157 participated in a weight-reduction program but did not undergo bariatric surgery. All participants received medical and dietetic care, as well as counseling about the importance of being physically active.
After a 3.4 year follow-up, it was discovered that metabolic syndrome decreased from 87% to 29% in the group that had bariatric surgery. Whereas metabolic syndrome only decreased from 85% to 75% in the non-surgical group.
The average weight loss was 44 pounds in the surgical group and 0.2 pounds in the non-surgical group.
Living larger than ever,
My Bariatric Life
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