Nutritional Challenges in Metabolic Syndrome

J Clin Med. 2019 Aug 24; 8(9):1301. doi: 10.3390/jcm8091301.
Hoyas, I., & Leon-Sanz, M.


Metabolic Syndrome (MetS) is a combination of risk factors for the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and type 2 diabetes. Different diagnostic criteria were proposed, but a consensus was reached in 2009 based on values of waist circumference, blood pressure, fasting glycemia, triglycerides, and high-density lipoprotein (HDL)-cholesterol levels. The main underlying etiologic factor is insulin resistance. The quality and quantity of individual macronutrients have an influence on the development and resolution of this syndrome. However, the main treatment goal is weight loss and a decrease in insulin resistance. A controlled energy dietary recommendation, together with moderate levels of physical activity, may positively change the parameters of MetS. However, there is no single dietary or exercise prescription that works for all patients. Dietary patterns such as Mediterranean-style, dietary approaches to stop hypertension (DASH), low-carbohydrate, and low-fat diets can ameliorate insulin resistance and MetS. Long-term adherence to a healthy lifestyle is key in assuring that individuals significantly reduce the risk of CVD and diabetes mellitus.

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List of abbreviations

DGEM German Society for Nutritional Medicine (German Deutsche Gesellschaft für Ernährungsmedizin)
GESKES  Swiss Society for Clinical Nutrition (German Gesellschaft für klinische Ernährung der Schweiz) 
ESPEN European Society of Clinicl Nutrition and Metabolism