Defining Syndrome X
Syndrome X or the metabolic syndrome is a cluster (constellation) of conditions that form a specific, health-challenging entity. Syndrome X may be regarded as the root cause of cardiovascular disease in Western society. It has been described as a hidden epidemic that affects 70 million Americans. The conditions that occur in Syndrome X include: Obesity, High Blood Cholesterol, Glucose Intolerance, Insulin Resistance, Diabetes Mellitus and Hypertension
Insulin resistance is a key issue in Syndrome X. The hormone insulin is responsible for the normal handling of glucose by the body. In states of insulin resistance, the body tissues do not respond to the command of insulin. As a consequence of insulin resistance more insulin is secreted by the pancreas to overcome insulin resistance. Excessive amounts of circulating insulin lead to a change in body chemistry where the body stores more fat (obesity) and produces more cholesterol (high blood cholesterol). In addition, high levels of insulin cause high blood pressure and damage the circulatory system. This sequence of events causes early coronary artery (heart) disease – America’s Number One Killer!
Dr. Stephen Holt has coined a new set of terms “Syndrome X, Y and Z…” because the conditions within Syndrome X seem to be also linked to common causes of infertility, irregular menstruation, polycystic ovaries and perhaps cancer of the breast, womb or colon. Individuals will learn much more about Syndrome X and its health significance in the next few years.
Syndrome X, Y and Z is a serious health concern for the world and America in particular. However, with the right nutritional support and positive lifestyle changes, Americans do not have to be destined for a life of disability or illness resulting from the complications of this condition.