The metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a cluster of risk factors for the development of cardiovascular disease and
type 2 diabetes mellitus. These risk factors include raised blood pressure, dyslipidemia (raised triglycerides and lowered
high-density lipoprotein cholesterol), raised fasting glucose, and central obesity. MetS has become a serious public health
and clinical problem whose prevalence and incidence are increasing along with the worldwide rise in rates of obesity and
sedentary lifestyles. A number of studies have shown that MetS is associated with a state of low-grade inflammation,
characterized by abnormal pro-inflammatory cytokine production, increased acute-phase reactants, and activation of a
network of inflammatory signalling pathways. Moreover, MetS has also been linked to oxidative stress, a consequence of
a reduction in the antioxidant systems and an increase in the production of reactive oxygen species. Nevertheless, agreement
exists that dietary intervention may modulate the pro-inflammatory state and lessen oxidative stress related to MetS,
thereby decreasing the cardiovascular risk. In this review we address the current available evidence regarding dietary
modulation of inflammation and oxidative stress associated with MetS.
Keywords: Dietary modulation, inflammation, mediterranean diet, metabolic syndrome, oxidative stress, polyphenols, resveratrol.
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