By Vicki Griffin, MPA, MACN
If a person has diabetes, they are also more likely to have high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and excess weight. Now we know why.
Gerald Reaven, MD, a hypertension researcher at Stanford University, suggested that type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke—the biggest killers in our society today—were actually one disease with various manifestations. He proposed that the real disorder is high blood insulin levels caused by cellular resistance to the action of insulin. He first called it syndrome X and later insulin resistance syndrome. Today we know it as metabolic syndrome.
At first, scientists argued about Reaven’s findings. But since more research has been conducted, metabolic syndrome is now an accepted reality in patient care and involves not only insulin but other hormones such as adiponectin, resistin, and leptin. Researchers have also found that insulin resistance affects not only muscle cells but fat cells, liver
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“The Link between the Metabolic Syndrome and Cancer,” Int J Biol Sci 2011, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.
“Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death,” NutritionFacts.org, July 26, 2012.
Vicki Griffin holds master’s degrees in both human nutrition and public administration and is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the American College of Nutrition. She is the director of Lifestyle Matters (www.lifestylematters.com), an educational resource that produces materials designed to help you improve physical health, optimize mental function, overcome addictions, and discover the keys to wholeness of body, mind, and spirit.