The metabolic syndrome, as described by Reaven, is a combination of obesity, insulin resistance, hypertension, hypertriglyceridemia, low HDL cholesterol, and hyperinsulinemia. The syndrome was recognized as a very high pro-atherogenic risk causing coronary heart disease. More recently, other features like an elevated plasma PAI-1 and CRP have been added to the syndrome. In view of the recent data demonstrating that insulin exerts an anti-inflammatory effect while macronutrients exert a pro-inflammatory effect, we are in a better position to explain not only why an insulin resistant state like the metabolic syndrome is pro-inflammatory but also to explain how it develops. This review discusses the relevance of these recent observations and puts into perspective the pathogenesis of various features of the metabolic syndrome and also predicts some features which may get incorporated into it in the future.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism