Revista Española de Salud Pública
Print version ISSN 1135-5727
MATIA MARTIN, Pilar; LECUMBERRI PASCUAL, Edurne and CALLE PASCUAL, Alfonso L.. Nutrition and Metabolic Syndrome. Rev. Esp. Salud Publica [online]. 2007, vol.81, n.5, pp. 489-505. ISSN 1135-5727. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1135-57272007000500006.
Sufficient evidence exists in relation to the association in clinical practice between disorders in the metabolism of glucose, lipoproteins, insulin action, arterial hypertension and centrally-distributed obesity. This association is named Metabolic Syndrome. Despite the existence thereof had been questioned by the ADA and EASD, it is a useful tool affording the possibility of identifying individuals at high risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Metabolic syndrome and/or its individual components are associated with a high incidence rate of cardiovascular disease. Obesity and a sedentary lifestyle are underlying risk factors along this syndromes pathway to disease, changes in living habits therefore being a first-line intervention in the prevention and treatment of insulin resistance, hyperglycemia, aterogenic dyslipemia and arterial hypertension. Weight loss and exercise are the keys to the overall plan, one of the most important non-pharmacological cardiovascular risk reduction strategies however still being diet. Epidemiological studies have found a high intake of simple sugars, of foods having a glycemic index and of diets with a high glycemic load to be associated to insulin resistance, type II diabetes mellitus, hypertriglyceridemia and low HDL-cholesterol figures. Los saturated fat intake in favor of polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fatty acids has been implied in a reduction of the incidence of type II diabetes mellitus and dyslipemia, although the debate is ongoing. Unrefined grain fiber in the diet has been beneficial in reducing the risk of diabetes. Among the diet patterns, the Mediterranean diet has been related to a lower incidence of diabetes and a reduction in the risk of death. Studies for intervention in the prevention of type II diabetes have suggested low-fat diets (reducing saturated and trans-fats), with a high degree of fiber and low glycemic index. Clinical trials have shown diets with small amounts of carbohydrates, low glycemic index and the Mediterranean and DASH diets to be beneficial in reducing aterogenic dyslipemia. There is currently no good evidence for choosing diets with restricted carbohydrates. On the other hand, different guides recommend low-calorie diets with a low content in saturated fats, trans-fats, cholesterol and sugars in favor the eating fruits, green vegetables, unrefined grains and fish.
Keywords : Metabolic Syndrome X; Diabetes mellitus; Type 2; Insulin resistance; Dyslipidemia; Hypertriglyceridemia; Hypertension; Obesity; Diet.