Let’s consider a situation where you own a fantastic car, but you are neglecting to maintain its engine. What do you see? Shortsighted. Isn’t it? Well, that is exactly what happens when you neglect your metabolic health. The funny part is, despite being a significant element, the neglect it receives is devastating. Although people link their body weight with their well-being, the reality is something different. Typically, there are 5 vital components of personal health that put up to metabolic health. Namely, these include waist circumference, triglycerides, blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol.
Under research, a mere 12% of Americans are regarded as metabolically healthy globally. That said, here’s a comprehensive blog post that speaks everything that you need to know about metabolic health. By the end of the guide, you will have an idea about what exactly metabolic health is, how important it is, its role, its markers, and the factors that affect it. Additionally, you will also get an idea about how to improve metabolic health by altering day-to-day habits.
How Is Metabolic Health Described?
The term “metabolic health” refers to how effectively your body transitions from consuming glucose or fat for energy to burning off stored energy. You see, if you decide to make up wise meal choices, you create room for your glucose levels to stay stable. Besides, they stay within a healthy level. Eventually, you know that you have taken a good step toward achieving ideal metabolic health.
Moving forward, the ideal definition of metabolic health consists of the following elements: ideal blood sugar level, ideal blood pressure level, triglycerides, waist circumference, and high-density lipoprotein (HDL). Each of these risk factors has a direct link with your risk of catching deadly diseases like stroke, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.
5 Markers of Metabolic Health
The thing is, no specific information will inform you if you are metabolically fit or not. Rather, healthcare professionals consider a myriad of measures to check your metabolic health levels. Below are the 5 Markers of Metabolic Health that decide how fit you are.
Insulin is a vital hormone secreted by the pancreas right after you eat or drink something. Gradually, when your body digests food, sugar (glucose) is produced. As a result, it starts circulating in your bloodstream. The presence of glucose in the bloodstream instructs your pancreas to release insulin. Insulin is the “unlocking” hormone that enables your cells to draw sugar from your blood and convert it to energy.
Typically, if sugar is consistently pumped into the blood and the pancreas overproduces insulin to keep it going, your cells will cease responding. This phenomenon is referred to as insulin resistance. Even while your pancreas tries harder to get the cells to react, it finally runs out of energy. Your blood sugar levels may remain chronically high because your body is unable to transport the glucose from the bloodstream into your cells. As a result, this increases your risk of developing diabetes, which in turn raises your odds of developing severe Cardiac disease.
This is pretty self-explanatory. Pay attention to the circumference/measurement of your waist. This is because the location of your fat storage is far more essential than the overall proportion of body fat. Particularly, belly fat is considered a warning sign since it raises the possibility of diabetes and insulin resistance.
Plaque development in your arteries causes high blood pressure. This is because it forces your heart to work harder to pump blood throughout your body. The additional stress may cause the cardiac muscle to enlarge and harden over time. As a result, the process limits the heart’s ability to perform normally. Heart disease, stroke risk, and heart attacks are all pumped because of high blood pressure.
You require cholesterol to create healthy cells. However, did you know it can often increase your chance of developing heart disease? Cholesterol is classified into two types: One is the dangerous form of cholesterol that raises your risk of heart disease called low-density lipoprotein (LDL). On the other hand, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) is the healthy variety of cholesterol that actually aids in preventing heart disease.
Triglycerides are a form of fat that runs all across the body; because they are both lipids with somewhat different activities. They frequently collaborate with cholesterol in biological processes. Triglycerides tend to store extra calories, while cholesterol helps to produce healthy cells.
Atherosclerosis, or the accumulation of fatty layers inside arteries, can develop when high triglyceride levels are paired with low HDL or high LDL. Not only does this limit blood flow, but it makes the heart beat faster. As a result, these fatty accumulations may eventually explode, leading to a blood clot.
Role of Metabolic Health
Let’s keep it clear. If you wish to stay healthy, you need to look after your metabolic health. This particular thing plays a major role in the risk of metabolic diseases, including liver disease, Cardiovascular disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, kidney disease, etc.
Moving forward, most of you might be unfamiliar with the term metabolic health. In fact, most people hear the term after they have become metabolically unhealthy. Generally, people trudge with energy crashes, brain fog, anxiety, cardiovascular problems, concentration issues, weight gain, etc., never realizing how these issues are caused due to poor metabolic health. Yet, not many look forward to changing their lifestyle.
Although several experts state that metabolic health denotes the lack of metabolic syndrome, other experts say that metabolic health denotes much more than that. On the contrary, few say that a metabolically healthy individual has great health and a low-zero risk of developing any metabolic disease.
What Affects Metabolic Health?
As stated above, there are a plethora of factors that influence the reactions occurring in the body. In a nutshell, here are 3 major categories that influence metabolic health.
Although there are many factors that affect our metabolic health, genetics is the most significant one. This is because most of us inherit metabolic illnesses while others are genetically endowed with powerful metabolisms. While we may not have any influence over the diseases we inherit, we can diagnose and handle them throughout time as they pertain to our wellness.
Demographics are yet another group of variables that affect metabolic health. Demographics contain personal data like our race, sex, and age, in addition to socioeconomic data. Such data include income, employment, education, and other factors. Together, demographics set us apart from one another.
Our lifestyle is a third factor that has an impact on how healthy our metabolism is. This is undoubtedly the essential category because it is the one over which we have control. Lifestyle habits are those that we choose. This involves our food, stress, level of exercise, and amount of sleep. There are numerous things we can do to make sure our lifestyle choices improve our metabolic health, even though there is no single recipe for doing so.
How Can You Improve Metabolic Health?
There is a range of factors that control your metabolic health. Studies state that mental health and chronic stress also contribute to affecting your metabolic health. Although changing your sex, age, and genes is entirely out of your control, you can always make changes to your sleeping patterns, diet, and activity levels. Eventually, it rewards you in the future by avoiding considerable rises in insulin, blood sugar, and blood fat.
- Pay attention to your sugar intake.
- Double up your fiber intake
- Start consuming whole foods
- Avoid processed foods
- Engage in daily exercises, walking, and aerobics
- Change your inappropriate eating times
- Have 7-8 hours of sleep
- Pay attention and monitor your blood sugar levels
- Make sure you manage both chronic stress and psychological stress.
What Does Being Metabolically Healthy Look Like?
Here’s the biggest question. What does being metabolically fit and healthy look like? Well, if you visit your doctor and he reveals you have normal levels in the 5 Markers of Metabolic Health, you can be considered metabolically healthy.
This further denotes that not only is your body free of all issues like cardiovascular disease and diabetes, but it is in the best state. Eventually, you will start noticing tremendous benefits with time as you take a step towards good metabolic health. A metabolically healthy individual has,
- Healthy Weight: A stable and healthy weight lowers your odds of catching obesity. This is because your body gets used to managing calories.
- Tremendous Energy: You will find yourself extremely energetic throughout the day because your body will maintain your blood glucose level. Unlike others, you will not face any ups and downs in energy before or after meals/snacks.
- Better Sleep: Studies state that people with poor diabetes and Type 2 diabetes experience poor sleeping patterns. On the contrary, people that manage blood sugar levels experience good sleep.
- Low Disease Risk: Healthy metabolism gives rise to healthy lifestyle factors, eventually lowering the risk of developing diseases.
What’s The Take?
In a nutshell, metabolic dysfunction is a state that you could be in for decades without even realizing or discovering it yourself. However, adopting proactive steps and prioritizing your well-being and metabolic health uncovers the unanswered pages in your health book. Eventually, taking care of your metabolic health reaps tremendous benefits in the long run that definitely 100x times worth.