Seafood as a functional food in decreasing the risk for the metabolic syndrome

Helen Hermana Miranda Hermsdorff, Itziar Abete, María Ángeles Zulet, Inga Thorsdottir, José Alfredo Martínez

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The increased incidence of the metabolic syndrome, characterized by insulin resistance, visceral adiposity, dyslipidemia, hypertension, and a systemic proinflammatory state, greatly increases the risk of cardiovascular disease. These clinical conditions are multifactorial in origin and treatment, having a strong dietary determinant. Currently, the most promising approach to mitigate obesity and metabolic syndrome is lifestyle intervention, weight reduction, decreased total and saturated fat consumption, and increased physical activity. In this sense, traditional foods, considered as functional foods, could be an important choice helping in the treatment of obesity and metabolic syndrome features. Functional foods consumed in an adequate amount on a healthy diet could improve the benefits associated to weight loss and reduce the metabolic syndrome features. Specifically, seafood has been considered as a functional food since their properties are not only nutritional, but also have been related with the improvement of several cardiovascular risk factors. Benefits include lower risk of primary cardiac arrest, reduced cardiovascular mortality, particularly sudden cardiac death, reduced triglyceride levels, increased high density lipoprotein levels, improved endothelial functions, reduced platelet aggregability, and lower blood pressure. Thus, healthy diets that avoid excess energy intake, reduce saturated fat and include seafood consumption may be a key component in the nutritional treatment of obesity and metabolic syndrome features.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFood Science and Security
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781617284236
ISBN (Print)9781606929773
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2009

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2009 Nova Science Publishers, Inc.


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