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The American Epidemic: Obesity, Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome
The current epidemic of obesity, metabolic syndrome and diabetes will lead to a new epidemic of heart disease in the United States and throughout the world. This epidemic in diabetes and heart disease will have an unprecedented effect on global health care not only in terms of the burden of illness but also in total economic costs measured in billions of dollars. The metabolic syndrome is a silent killer. It is known as the "Deadly Quartet." Many individuals do not realize that they have this condition and many physicians do not treat it as aggressively as it requires. It is characterized by a cluster of metabolic abnormalities that include glucose intolerance, high blood pressure, high triglycerides and low HDL (good cholesterol). Metabolic syndrome is usually associated with obesity but lean individuals can also have the illness. This is particularly true for certain ethnic groups such as Asians. In Western society most individuals have obesity. It is the forerunner to diabetes because if itis left unchecked the metabolic syndrome is the central metabolic disturbance for all diabetic individuals.
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January 05, 2005
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