Relationship of Metabolic Risk Factors and Development of Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes
The prevalence of obesity and diabetes has reached pandemic proportions. Obesity, particularly in association with high waist circumference and high BMI, is an independent risk factor for coronary heart disease (CHD) and diabetes. Several large studies have shown that marginal (5 lb) to moderate (11 to 22 lb) weight gain in adulthood (age 20 to 50 years) increases the risk of chronic disease and negatively affects CHD risk status. The metabolic syndrome, a clustering of cardiovascular and metabolic risk factors that includes abdominal obesity, is increasing among adults and children and is strongly associated with the development of diabetes and CHD. Recent evidence suggests that elevated liver enzymes, an indicator of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, may comprise an additional component of the metabolic syndrome and may serve as a surrogate marker for type 2 diabetes, particularly if used in conjunction with C-reactive protein.