The Hidden Secret to Weight Loss
There is a hormone imbalance that 44% of the adult population over the age of 50 have and it is called Syndrome X or metabolic syndrome. It is more common in women than men and is seen in most populations around the world. The exact cause is unknown, but the general consensus is that it is a result of the Standard American Diet (SAD) combined with a sedentary lifestyle. The SAD diet is low in essential fatty acids, fiber and high in saturated fats and sugar which promotes many glucose disorders or insulin resistance.
Symptoms include, but are not limited to:
- Sugar cravings
- Inability to lose weight (especially abdominal obesity)
- High cholesterol, or if you are on cholesterol mediations
- High blood pressure (hypertension), or if you are on blood pressure medications
- High blood sugar (pre-diabetes and diabetes), or if you are on diabetes medications
- Constant hunger
- Fatigue after meals
- Chronic pain
A skilled physician can make this diagnosis with a special blood test and a physical examination.
If left unchecked, this condition can have some very adverse effects to one’s health, such as: early aging, unexplained weight gain, vision problems/blindness, kidney damage, heart disease, skin lesions, peripheral neuropathy and death. In women, this can lead to androgen dominance which is an increase in male characteristics leading to infertility (PCOS), irregular periods, unexplained weight gain, fluid retention, fatigue, mood swings, acne beyond puberty, darkened patches of skin on the neck and arm pits, hair loss and unwanted hair growth on the body and face. Although these are unwanted characteristics, there are more serious underlying problems such as an increased risk of some cancers and heart disease.
Something you can try at home to assess your risk is checking your waist to hip ratio (abdominal obesity). First measure your waist (don’t hold your breath in!) and then the widest part of your hips. Now divide the waist measurement by your hip measurement. A ratio larger than 0.8 for women (or 1.0 for men) indicates abdominal obesity and a higher risk for developing metabolic syndrome. If you are suffering from any of the above symptoms, it is important that you get this checked out by a skilled practitioner. Even if your waist to hip ratio is within the normal range and you have some of the above symptoms, it is still important to get checked because it is not the only deciding factor.
If you are diagnosed with metabolic syndrome this can be corrected relatively easily with a change in lifestyle.