Tag Archives: metabolic syndrome

Sugar (and Fructose) Restriction May Be the Key to Eliminating Metabolic Syndrome and Reducing Heart Disease

Dr. Axel Sigurdsson is a cardiologist and blogger who writes about heart disease. A recent post of his considered the role of sugar, including fructose, in metabolic syndrome and coronary artery disease. He does a great job translating scientific research for consumption by the general public. For example:

“Lustig studied 43 obese children (ages 8-19) with metabolic abnormalities typical of the metabolic syndrome. All were high consumers of added sugar in their diets (e.g. soft drinks, juices, pastries, breakfast cereals, salad dressings, etc.).

The children were fed the same calories and percent of each macronutrient as their home diet; but within the carbohydrate fraction, the added sugar was removed, and replaced with starch. For example, pastries were taken out, and bagels put in; yogurt was taken out, baked potato chips were put in; chicken teriyaki was taken out, turkey hot dogs were put in. Whole fruit was allowed.After ten days, diastolic blood pressure fell, insulin resistance decreased, liver tests improved, and triglycerides, LDL cholesterol, and HDL cholesterol all improved.”

Source: Medical Practice

PS: All of my diets combat metabolic syndrome.

Steve Parker MD, Advanced Mediterranean Diet

Two diet books in one

60% of American Adults Are Taking Prescription Drugs

"These are flying off the shelves!"

“But selling drugs is good for the economy!”

The 60% drug use figure is up significantly over the last decade, from 50%. UPI has the pertinent details. A snippet:

Many of the most used drugs reflect the effects of metabolic syndrome, a group of conditions tied to obesity and diet.

“Eight of the 10 most commonly used drugs in 2011-2012 are used to treat components of the cardiometabolic syndrome, including hypertension, diabetes, and dyslipidemia,” researchers wrote in the study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. “Another is a proton-pump inhibitor used for gastroesophageal reflux, a condition more prevalent among individuals who are overweight or obese. Thus, the increase in use of some agents may reflect the growing need for treatment of complications associated with the increase in overweight and obesity.”

I’m not anti-drug, generally. Lord knows I prescribe my fair share. But in addition to the cost of drugs, we have side effects and drug interactions to worry about. If we in the U.S. would effectively attack overweight and obesity, we’d be much better off.

It’s a lot easier to just pop a pill, isn’t it? Especially if someone else is paying for the pill.

Steve Parker, M.D.

Improve Metabolic Syndrome with Paleolithic Diet

…according to an article at American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

shutterstock_268538780

 

“Metabolic syndrome” may be a new term for you. It’s a collection of clinical features that are associated with increased future risk of type 2 diabetes and atherosclerotic complications such as heart attack and stroke. You can lower your risk of these conditions by reversing your metabolic syndrome.

One in six Americans has metabolic syndrome. Diagnosis requires at least three of the following five conditions:

  • high blood pressure (130/85 or higher, or using a high blood pressure medication)
  • low HDL cholesterol: under 40 mg/dl (1.03 mmol/l) in a man, under 50 mg/dl (1.28 mmol/l) in a women (or either sex taking a cholesterol-lowering drug)
  • triglycerides over 150 mg/dl (1.70 mmol/l) (or taking a cholesterol-lowering drug)
  • abdominal fat: waist circumference 40 inches (102 cm) or greater in a man, 35 inches (89 cm) or greater in a woman
    fasting blood glucose over 100 mg/dl (5.55 mmol/l)
  • fasting blood glucose over 100 mg/dl (5.55 mmol/l)

I don’t plan on reading the full text of the report because it’s a meta-analysis and I’ve likely reviewed the four component studies already at my Paleo Diabetic blog. Here are the results:

Four RCTs [randomized controlled trials] that involved 159 participants were included. The 4 control diets were based on distinct national nutrition guidelines but were broadly similar. Paleolithic nutrition resulted in greater short-term improvements than did the control diets (random-effects model) for waist circumference (mean difference: −2.38 cm; 95% CI: −4.73, −0.04 cm), triglycerides (−0.40 mmol/L; 95% CI: −0.76, −0.04 mmol/L), systolic blood pressure (−3.64 mm Hg; 95% CI: −7.36, 0.08 mm Hg), diastolic blood pressure (−2.48 mm Hg; 95% CI: −4.98, 0.02 mm Hg), HDL cholesterol (0.12 mmol/L; 95% CI: −0.03, 0.28 mmol/L), and fasting blood sugar (−0.16 mmol/L; 95% CI: −0.44, 0.11 mmol/L). The quality of the evidence for each of the 5 metabolic components was moderate. The home-delivery (n = 1) and dietary recommendation (n = 3) RCTs showed similar effects with the exception of greater improvements in triglycerides relative to the control with the home delivery. None of the RCTs evaluated an improvement in quality of life.

Ways to improve or cure metabolic syndrome include the paleo diet, Mediterranean diet, low-carb diets, ketogenic diets, and exercise. Losing excess fat weight with any reasonable diet would probably work. Enhance effectiveness with exercise.

Steve Parker, M.D.

Reference:Eric W Manheimer,  Esther J van Zuuren, Zbys Fedorowicz, and Hanno Pijl. Paleolithic nutrition for metabolic syndrome: systematic review and meta-analysis. AJCN. First published August 12, 2015, doi: 10.3945/​ajcn.115.113613

Recipe: Natchez Eggs

kk

This particular batch contained Bacon Bits

Natchez Eggs is an old family recipe.  It’s sort of an egg casserole, good for breakfast.  We tend to dust off this recipe when we have house guests—it feeds many people at once, quickly and easily.

It’s not in The Advanced Mediterranean Diet (2nd Edition) or KMD: Ketogenic Mediterranean Diet, although it’s compatible with both of those.

Note my use of both U.S. customary and metric measurements, which I also use in the books. I have no idea how much it costs to ship a book from the U.S. to New Zealand, but the e-book versions (AMD or KMD) have no shipping charges.

The low carbohydrate content of this dish is a bonus if you have diabetes, prediabetes, or metabolic syndrome.

kk

Note the light brown crust which tells you it’s probably finished cooking

Ingredients

Cheese, shredded (four-cheese mexican blend), 8 0z (224 g)
Sour cream, 16 oz (448 g)
Green chiles, diced, canned, 8 oz net weight (224g)
Eggs, large, 10 (50 g each)

Preparation

Pre-heat oven to 350°F (175°C).  Mix eggs thoroughly in a blender for 3–4 minutes on medium speed, then pour into bowl.  Coat a baking dish (9 x13 inches, or 22 x 34 cm) with butter, vegetable oil, PAM or no-stick baking spray.  Whisk eggs and sour cream together in bowl.  Drain excess water from the chile cans, then spread chiles evenly on the bottom of a dish, then layer the cheese evenly on top.  Next, ladle or pour the eggs/sour cream on top.  Bake for about 30 minutes, until the eggs are firm, not runny, and you see patches of thin light brown crust.

Number of Servings

12 servings of 4 oz or 110 g each.  Leftovers hold up well in refrigerator for eating over the next few days.

Nutrient Analysis

A serving has 3 grams of digestible carbohydrate, 200 calories, 140 calories from fat, 8 grams of saturated fat, 10 grams of protein, 210 mg cholesterol, 4 grams of carboydrate, 1 gram of fiber (so only 3 grams of digestible carb).

Advanced Mediterranean Diet boxes: 1 fat and 1/2 protein

Options

After you add the cheese layer, sprinkle layer of  Hormel Real Crumbled Bacon (4 oz or 112 g) before finishing up with the  egg mixture.  This adds 33 calories and zero carbs per serving.  Or just serve with bacon on the side (my preference).  An alternative to the Hormel product is to cook and crumble your own bacon (12 oz or 340 g uncooked weight).  Using too much bacon will overwhelm the other flavors.  Experiment with different cheeses.

You can also tweak it if you wish with additional ingredients such as diced bell peppers or chopped green onions (chives). I wouldn’t add more than one ingredient per batch. I wonder if small chunks of broccoli would work.

Steve Parker, M.D.

You’re Still at Risk Healthwise Even If You’re “Metabolically Healthy”

I'll eat my hat if this dude doesn't have metabolic syndrome

I’ll eat my hat if this dude doesn’t have metabolic syndrome

See details at MedPageToday.

Some studies suggest you can be healthy and long-lived while obese as long as you are “metabolically healthy.” That is, if you have normal blood pressure, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, blood sugar, and waist circumference. A new meta-analysis finds that ain’t so: you’re still at higher risk for death or cardiovascular events if you’re obese and free of metabolic syndrome features.

“Our results do not support this concept of ‘benign obesity’ and demonstrate that there is no ‘healthy’ pattern of obesity,” Kramer and colleagues wrote. “Even within the same category of metabolic status (healthy or unhealthy) we show that certain cardiovascular risk factors (blood pressure, waist circumference, low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol level, insulin resistance) progressively increase from normal weight to overweight to obese.”

Click for the scientific journal abstract.

This report does not directly address the “fat but fit” concept, whereby you can counteract some of the adverse health effects of obesity by being fit. By fit, I mean regularly exercising and achieving a decent level of capacity and tolerance for physical activity. Fat but fit still holds.

Steve Parker, M.D.

Metabolic Syndrome: A Thumbnail Sketch

metabolic syndrome, low-carb diet, diabetes, prediabetes

He’s at high risk for metabolic syndrome

“Metabolic syndrome” may be a new term for you. It’s a collection of clinical features that are associated with increased future risk of type 2 diabetes and atherosclerotic complications such as heart attack and stroke. One in six Americans has metabolic syndrome. Diagnosis requires at least three of the following five conditions:

  • high blood pressure (130/85 or higher, or using a high blood pressure medication)
  • low HDL cholesterol:  under 40 mg/dl (1.03 mmol/l) in a man, under 50 mg/dl (1.28 mmol/l) in a women (or either sex taking a cholesterol-lowering drug)
  • triglycerides over 150 mg/dl (1.70 mmol/l) (or taking a cholesterol-lowering drug)
  • abdominal fat:  waist circumference 40 inches (102 cm) or greater in a man, 35 inches (89 cm) or greater in a woman
  • fasting blood glucose over 100 mg/dl (5.55 mmol/l)

What To Do About It

Metabolic syndrome and simple excess weight often involve impaired carbohydrate metabolism. Over time, excessive carbohydrate consumption can turn overweight and metabolic syndrome into prediabetes, then type 2 diabetes.  Carbohydrate restriction directly addresses impaired carbohydrate metabolism naturally. When my patients have metabolic syndrome, some of my recommendations are:

  • weight loss, often via a low-carb diet (but most any reasonable diet may also work)
  • carbohydrate-restricted diet if blood sugars or triglycerides are elevated
  • regular exercise, a combination of strength and aerobic training

If these are effective, the patient can often avoid costly drugs and their potential adverse effects.

Ask your doctor what she thinks.

Steve Parker, M.D.

Mediterranean Diet Reduces Risk of Metabolic Syndrome

…in Europeans, according to a recent research report in Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Disease. The study at hand lasted over six years and involved over 3,000 participants.

Learn about metabolic syndrome.