What is metabolic syndrome? And can it really be cured? Metabolic syndrome – also called Syndrome X -is a severe illness that affects up to 25 % of the world’s population.
Metabolic syndrome leads to increased risk of heart attack, stroke, liver failure, kidney failure and a host of other unpleasant health issues. So what actually is it and how can you reverse it?
The World Health Organization, defines metabolic syndrome as at least three of the following five symptoms. So read through and see if these apply to you.
1 – Excess weight around the abdomen. Now you can be overweight and have large thighs and a big booty, but that doesn’t indicate metabolic syndrome. The fat that we’re especially concerned about is the fat that’s inside and outside of your belly. That’s called apple shape, that’s the dangerous fat and that’s why it’s, part of the diagnosis criteria for metabolic syndrome.
2 – High blood pressure or hypertension.
3 – High blood sugar, pre-diabetes type 2 diabetes, or any one of those conditions that concern blood glucose levels.
4 – Elevated triglycerides.
5 – Low, HDL cholesterol, not total cholesterol. Total cholesterol and LDL are not markers of risk for heart attack and stroke, so they’re not included in the definition of metabolic syndrome, and you can stop worrying about those two numbers as well. They’re, just not important for predicting future disease when it comes to talking about your health.
So what causes metabolic syndrome?
Many people think, “Oh it’s, eating too much, or it’s, eating too much fat or it’s eating too much saturated fat.” But no, none of those have anything to do with metabolic syndrome.
The truth is there’s only two main things. One is elevated insulin levels that are that are above normal, and the second is chronic inflammation. Those are the two things that lead to metabolic syndrome and if you are able to somehow figure out how to fix those two things you’re well on your way to reversing it.
“Um… okay, so how in the heck am I going to do that?”
So if it’s caused by increased insulin and increased inflammation, then it would stand to reason that if you decrease those two back down to normal levels, then it’ll go away and you’re absolutely right!
What causes the increased insulin? Well, it’s, caused by chronically overeating carbohydrates, sugars, starches and drinking fructose, either in soft drinks or in fruit juice, and eating simple carbs that aren’t super nutrient dense carbs. Foods like buns, lollies, ice-cream and the rest; all the foods that actually taste good 😊
So when you eat too many of these, then your blood sugar keeps spiking, and your pancreas keeps secreting insulin trying to pull the blood sugar levels back down. Now we have chronically elevated insulin level, and so that’s part one of metabolic syndrome. Part two is the inflammation, and so, when you’re eating processed food, that’s going to cause inflammation. That’s because it contains vegetable oils, but there are no veggies in vegetable oil whatsoever. There’s, no zucchini, no broccoli, no cauliflower in vegetable oils.
Vegetable oils really should be called seed oils, or bean oils, and you need to get them completely out of your diet. If you have metabolic syndrome or if you’re moving that way, you need to eliminate canola oil from all of your food. You need to eliminate corn oil, soybean oil, safflower oil and sunflower oil. I love sunflower seeds, but the oil that comes from them is inflammatory and not good for you.
So when you eliminate all those inflammatory oils and start cooking and eating food, that’s been prepared with olive oil, lard (yes really!), butter, avocado oil, which are good healthy oils, with a good omega-3 to omega-6 ratio, your inflammation goes down dramatically, and so, when you lower your insulin level and you lower your level of inflammation in your body, guess what? Your metabolic syndrome starts to go away.
When you do these two things, you have basically tapped into the two most powerful tools for lowering your insulin level back down, and for lowering your blood sugar levels back down to normal and for lowering your levels of inflammation your body as well.
Why is metabolic syndrome so dangerous?
First of all, you’ve got this big belly and you’re probably unhealthy and no doubt miserable most of the time, but it also increases your risk of all these other medical issues like heart attack, heart failure, stroke, dementia, liver failure, kidney failure and the rest – so you really need to take this seriously.
What about diets?
In a perfect world, there would be a perfect diet, and we would all follow it, and we would all be healthy. Unfortunately, there’s no one diet that suits everyone, and people have a hard time sticking to diets. Take the Weight Watchers diet; you’re going to lose 20 pounds and then gain back 25. That didn’t help much, did it?
You might try the Ornish diet, the Jenny Craig diet or the Slimfast diet, and with all those you’re going to lose 5, 10, 20, or even 30 pounds. But then you’re going to gain back all those pounds in a short time. Does this sound familiar? It’s just the way it works; you can’t stay on a diet all your life!
So forget the diets and just cut out processed foods and lower your carb intake. If you combine this with some degree of intermittent fasting or time restricted eating, you’re going to start burning off fat instead of glucose. Then you burn up the visceral or the intra-abdominal fat, the fat that’s on the inside of your abdominal muscles.
As you start to burn fat, when you get your inflammation and your insulin levels down, high blood pressure gets better without exception. It may not always go back to normal, but it drops significantly. Your triglycerides will go back to normal. So, if you’ve got elevated triglycerides you don’t even need to consider any other way of eating except cutting out processed foods, simple carbs, and those awful vegetable oils.
What about the cholesterol?
We’re looking here for high HDL. The above way of eating will raise HDL levels quickly and so, when you reverse these five things, guess what you just cured?
It’s really that simple. Now I know that changing your eating habits isn’t easy, so why not gradually start cutting out the processed foods and sugar. It’s surprising how quickly your sweet tooth will disappear. Don’t use vegetable oil for cooking, start using olive or coconut oil instead. One things you might enjoy is pure, natural butter. Ditch that awful pale margarine, it’s really not doing you any good.
Throw in some daily exercise and you’ll be feeling and looking better in no time!