What is metabolic syndrome?

What is metabolic syndrome?

The condition of having three or more of the following risk factors:

Abdominal obesity

Elevated triglycerides

Your triglycerides are greater than or equal to 150 mg/dL or you are taking medication to lower your triglycerides.

Low HDL (good) cholesterol

  • Men – your HDL cholesterol is less than 40 mg/dL or you’re taking medication to improve your cholesterol.
  • Women – your HDL cholesterol is less than 50 mg/dL or you’re taking medication to improve your cholesterol.
  • What is a normal cholesterol level?

Impaired fasting glucose

Your fasting glucose is 100mg/dL or higher or you are on medication to control your blood sugar.

Your doctor can check your triglycerides, HDL cholesterol, and fasting glucose numbers with a simple bloodwork test.

High blood pressure

One of the following applies to you:

  • Your systolic blood pressure (top number) is 140mm Hg or higher
  • Your diastolic blood pressure (bottom number) is 90mm Hg or higher
  • You’re taking blood pressure medication

If you have metabolic syndrome, you are considered to be two to four times more likely to develop cardiovascular disease (including heart attack and stroke) and five times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those without metabolic syndrome.

Gundy, S. et al, Circulation, 2004; 109: 433-38
The Metabolic Syndrome: Essential Considerations (and Opportunities) for Fitness Professionals. AprilMay 2008 by Ralph La Forge, M.S., ACE Certified News
National Cholesterol Education Panel
ACSM’s Certified News: April/May/June 2006. Metabolic Syndrome: An Important Target for Exercise Intervention.

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