You may have never heard of metabolic syndrome before. In fact, many doctors don’t even know what it is because it’s a relatively new concept. When we look at heart disease risk factors, metabolic syndrome is a risk factor that’s much stronger than the traditional way of looking at a cholesterol or LDL level in the blood. Understanding the syndrome and its consequences is extremely important.
What is metabolic syndrome?
The syndrome is a little confusing because it draws together different things that might not seem related when you look at the body itself. Metabolic syndrome involves an increased body girth or abdominal girth (i.e., a large waistline). It also includes several blood parameters like high blood glucose, but not quite to the level of diabetes; an increase in triglycerides, or blood fats, which is not often regarded as a problem by most doctors (but it is!); a low “good cholesterol” level (HDL), which many doctors don’t regard as something they can do anything about so they don’t pay attention to it much; and blood pressure elevation. These are the major elements, although different organizations have defined metabolic syndrome differently.
How is it treated?
Most doctors understand that blood pressure is a significant problem and they’ll usually treat high blood pressure with medication. Most doctors will look at a blood profile and see the elevated glucose and treat that with medication. Another doctor might look at the blood cholesterol level and want to treat an LDL or total cholesterol with medication. That’s just the way doctors have been taught, basically – to treat each of these independent metabolic syndrome items separately, using medication. But that’s not the only way to go about treating it – you can treat the syndrome with a keto lifestyle. The keto lifestyle actually treats all of these elements of metabolic syndrome. It’s even powerful enough to treat type 2 diabetes. If your doctor is looking at the blood tests and doing a physical exam, make sure that these elements are included – the abdominal circumference or waistline, blood pressure, triglycerides, HDL, and blood sugar. Then, you’ll have a complete picture of whether you have metabolic syndrome or not. Just three of the five of these elements usually put you into the criteria of having metabolic syndrome, but suffice it to say that any of these are something worth taking action about if you have an abnormality. Metabolic syndrome is a risk factor and the cause of atherosclerosis, heart disease, and vascular disease, and it should be treated with either medication, as traditional doctors do, or with lifestyle, especially the keto lifestyle, which is the way that I choose to treat metabolic syndrome.
What does the keto diet look like?
There are many ways to do a keto lifestyle and the approach that we use is a very simple one. You eat real foods including meat, fish, poultry, eggs, a few leafy greens and vegetables. Keep the carbs under 20 total grams for the day and the hunger goes away after a day or two. It’s clear sailing from there.
Watch the full video here.