Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a cluster of central obesity, dyslipidaemia, insulin resistance
and hypertension. MetS frequently co-exists with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), which is
characterized by fat accumulation in the liver in the absence of alcohol abuse, viral hepatitis and other
causes of chronic liver diseases. Both MetS and NAFLD are associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular
disease and type 2 diabetes mellitus. There are also other associations between MetS and
In the present narrative review, we discuss the links between MetS and NAFLD in terms of prevalence,
risk factors and treatment (both lifestyle interventions and drug therapy). Such associations highlight the
common pathophysiological pathways of these metabolic disorders, although data for an independent
association are not robust. Nevertheless, NAFLD may be regarded as a hepatic manifestation of MetS.
Keywords: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular risk, risk factors, anti-obesity drugs, antidiabetic
drugs, hypolipidaemic drugs, antihypertensive drugs.
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