Bea th silen killer

Healthy Food Guide (Australia) - - CONTENTS -

It can greatly in­crease your risk of di­a­betes and heart at­tack, yet to most it’s a mys­tery. Here’s how to beat it!

It’s a health con­di­tion that greatly in­creases your risk of di­a­betes and heart at­tack, yet you prob­a­bly haven’t even heard of it. Di­eti­tian Melissa Meier shows you how to pre­vent ‘syn­drome X’.

Meta­bolic syn­drome has in­creased rapidly in re­cent years — in fact, over half of Aus­tralian adults now have a risk fac­tor as­so­ci­ated with it, and 35 per cent of us have the con­di­tion it­self. But while it can lead to a range of se­ri­ous health risks, sim­ple life­style changes can stop the syn­drome in its tracks. Here’s what you should know.

What is it?

Meta­bolic syn­drome, also known as ‘syn­drome X’, is a col­lec­tion of in­ter­linked risk fac­tors that are closely as­so­ci­ated with heart dis­ease, stroke and type 2 di­a­betes. It’s such a com­plex con­di­tion that it isn’t fully un­der­stood yet, so there’s no hard and fast def­i­ni­tion that can be used with ab­so­lute cer­tainty. None­the­less, you could be di­ag­nosed with meta­bolic syn­drome if you fit three or more of the fol­low­ing cri­te­ria: • Ab­dom­i­nal obe­sity Waist cir­cum­fer­ence above 94cm for men or 80cm for women • Hy­per­ten­sion Blood pres­sure above 140/90 mmHg • Di­a­betes, in­sulin re­sis­tance or im­paired fast­ing glu­cose • High LDL ‘bad’ choles­terol and low HDL ‘good’ choles­terol • High blood triglyc­erides If you have meta­bolic syn­drome, your risk of heart at­tack is dou­bled and your risk of de­vel­op­ing type 2 di­a­betes is mul­ti­plied by five. But over the page we show you some sim­ple ways you can re­duce your risk and im­prove your qual­ity of life. It’s time to break the si­lence!

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