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Metabolic Syndrome and Living Healthy - Interview With Dr. Usha Sriram at ISPEN

Metabolic Syndrome and Living Healthy - Interview With Dr. Usha Sriram at ISPEN 2019

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  • On behalf of ISPEN 2019, Medindia interviewed Dr. Usha Sriram on her talk on Metabolic syndrome
  • Dr. Usha Sriram suggested that we can effectively treat the underlying cause of the individual risk factors of metabolic syndrome
  • She stressed the fact that metabolic syndrome can be treated by therapeutic lifestyle changes

Metabolic syndrome is prevalent in India. It increases your risk for developing cardiovascular disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. It is a constellation of risk factors such as hypertension, glucose intolerance, abdominal obesity, low high-density lipoprotein, and hypercholesterolemia - any three factors constitute a diagnosis.

Adiposity (especially abdominal), physical exercise and genetics are found to play a role in the variability of insulin resistance and risk for increased expression of other risk factors.


The risk of metabolic syndrome increases as you increase in age. It is suggested that we effectively treat the underlying cause of the individual risk factors.

Therapeutic lifestyle changes (TLC) have to be made in emphasizing reduction in saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol, encouraging weight management and physical activity, adding plant stanols/sterols, increased fiber intake and referral to a dietician.

Dr. Usha Sriram, AB (Internal medicine) AB (Endocrinology) TAG, is a Senior Consultant Endocrinologist at VHS Hospital in Chennai.

We are pleased to have Dr. Usha Sriram at the ISPEN 2019 to speak on Metabolic syndrome. Here are a few excerpts on the interview with Medindia.

Dr. Usha Sriram

Q. Could you please explain Metabolic Syndrome to our readers?

A. Metabolic syndrome is a collection of conditions like high blood pressure, high triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol and some form of abnormal glucose, which can be either frank diabetes or pre-diabetes, and increased fat, especially the visceral body fat. All this put together is metabolic syndrome.

Q. The incidence of Metabolic Syndrome has gone up - what are the reasons?

A. It is just our changing lifestyles - we are now more sedentary, eating more processed food, and eating more food. The availability of food to be ordered over the phone has made people to eat more. So, there is just more food available and less activity, a combination of the two and more stress. 

Q. What tips would you like to give to a layman for preventing Metabolic Syndrome?

A. It is eating healthy, being active, sleeping well, spending more time with family and friends, spending less time on phones and gadgets. When it comes to eating, we need to stay healthy by consuming our traditional foods, keeping portion control in mind, and reducing the consumption of junk food Clearly, it has been shown that increasing fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds in the diet decreases the risk of all these conditions. 

Q. You are a well-known Endocrinologist, and the incidence of diabetes has gone up in India - please tell us how we can control this epidemic?

A. I wish I knew the answer. But, it is something that we have to start with pregnant woman because a healthy girl becomes a healthy woman. A healthy woman becomes a healthy mother. Healthy mother has a healthy baby and the healthy baby has to become a healthy girl. So, that's the life-cycle of this whole thing. So, the nutrition has to start from a schoolgirl, then she becomes a high school girl, then college girl. Good healthy eating with attention to proper nutrition, a lot of playing outside is so important.

Source: Medindia

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