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January 12, 2010 at 9:14 AMComments: 0 Faves: 0

Pre-Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome

By Smarty More Blogs by This Author

America is now experiencing an obesity epidemic, and type II diabetes is often associated with obesity. But even before people develop type II diabetes, sometimes for years, they are almost always in a state called “pre-diabetes”. An estimated 57 million people in the United States currently live with pre-diabetes! This means their blood sugar levels are too high to be considered healthy, but not yet high enough to be considered diabetes. Long term damage may already be occurring to the heart and circulatory system during this time. People with pre-diabetes are at a 50 percent higher risk for heart disease and stroke, and the risk grows if they smoke tobacco or have high blood pressure or high cholesterol. Metabolic syndrome is a relatively new description for a cluster of conditions that includes increased blood pressure, excess body fat around the waist, abnormal cholesterol levels, and elevated insulin levels, all of which can occur together and dramatically increase risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Experiencing three or more of these conditions qualifies as metabolic syndrome, at great risks to health, but with a unique hope. The bright side to pre-diabetes and metabolic syndrome? There is still enough time and health to change the prognosis. If you live with pre-diabetes or metabolic syndrome, you do not have to end up with type II diabetes or worse. Improving your lifestyle now is the best method to improve health and decrease risk of further damage to the body. Healthy lifestyle choices for pre-diabetes and metabolic syndrome focus on dropping unhealthy habits and adding good ones. Losing weight is important to address pre-diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Losing as little as 5 to 10 percent of body weight can reduce insulin levels and blood pressure, and decrease risk of developing type II diabetes. Battle the bulge with excercise; you should get 30 to 60 minutes of daily moderate intensity exercise, such as brisk walking. You can also increase  movement in daily life by simply taking the stairs or parking further from the front door. Learn about the glycemic index and how it can benefit your health and reduce symptoms of pre-diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Low glycemic foods are foods that won’t quickly break down during digestion, and so help to regulate blood sugar levels. Low glycemic foods are in the range of 55 or below, and include most fruits and vegetables (not potatoes), grainy high fiber breads like pumpernickel and mixed grain, legumes and beans, and nuts. If you smoke, now is the time to quit. Smoking cigarettes actually increases insulin resistance, worsens the health consequences of metabolic syndrome, and can increase your risk of cardiovascular health problems from pre-diabetes. When it comes to defeating pre-diabetes and metabolic syndrome, your hope rests in owning the present moment. Commit to a few new lifestyle changes, and enjoy a healthier life that will provide a much better quality of living for you and those you love. Sources:

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