Metabolic Syndrome is the medical term used to explain the clustering of those risk factors in an individual which may result in coronary heart diseases. The main symptoms of this condition are high levels of cholesterol and triglycerides, insulin resistance, obesity and high blood pressure. Low H.D.L and a high waist – hip ratio are also associated with this syndrome.
A two year old child may exhibit cholesterol and triglycerides level similar to his parent, according to recent studies. By the time he becomes nine, he may show soaring levels of blood pressure and triglycerides. Though this may decrease in his teenage hood, it will reach its peak levels in his youth, as per these studies.
Studies show that 10 – 15% of teenagers have high levels of blood pressure and triglycerides. Children exhibiting the symptoms of metabolic syndrome are having greater risk of having heart diseases, diabetes and other major health issues.
Moreover, these studies reveal that girls are the most affected than boys. Further, it was observed that three out of four teenagers carried all the symptoms of metabolic syndrome to their youth.
Those children, who are hereditarily susceptible for heart diseases and diabetes, should be diagnosed for metabolic syndrome. Children with high blood pressure and obesity should also seek proper medical attention.
Diet and Treatment
Proper diet control should be exercised in those children who are diagnosed with cholesterol variations. It is proved that diet control should strictly be followed once a child reaches two years of age. Before two years diet control is not necessary.
Only 30% of calories should be obtained from fats, 10% from saturated fats, 60% from carbohydrates and 10 – 15% from proteins. Unhealthy food items that contain high levels of saturated fats, trans fats and cholesterol should be restricted.
Include whole grain cereals like whole wheat and brown rice, fruits, vegetables, leafy greens, skimmed milk (with 1% fat content), raw vegetable salads and low fat dairy products in the daily diet of your child.
Along with diet control, regular exercises are also required to prevent as well as to control metabolic syndrome. Let him indulge in sports for 2 – 3 hours daily.
Also, inspire your child to follow healthy food habits from an earlier age itself. Balanced diet, regular exercises and a healthy lifestyle can protect your child from metabolic syndrome.