The metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a cluster of metabolic conditions associated to abdominal obesity, such as
elevated blood pressure, impaired glucose tolerance, insulin resistance, elevated triglycerides, and low high-density lipoprotein
cholesterol concentrations. Each of the associated conditions has an independent effect, but clustering together
they become synergistic, making the risk of developing cardiovascular disease (CVD) greater. There is a big debate as to
whether the MetS alone or its associated health conditions are more important for CVD incidence and mortality or
whether prevention and/or treatment of the MetS will reduce CVD incidence and mortality. This article reviews the evidence
that demonstrates that individuals with the MetS are at increased risk for CVD incidence and mortality and discusses
these debated issues.
Keywords: Metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, diabetes mellitus, lipids, blood pressure.
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