Self-management

Lifestyle and home remedies

A lifelong commitment to a healthy lifestyle is usually required to prevent serious health problems, such as diabetes and heart disease. This includes:

  • Being physically active. Doctors recommend getting 30 or more minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as brisk walking, daily. Look for ways to increase activity, such as walking instead of driving and using stairs instead of elevators when possible.
  • Losing weight. Weight loss and maintaining a healthy weight can reduce insulin resistance and blood pressure and decrease your risk of diabetes.
  • Eating healthfully. The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet and the Mediterranean diet, like many healthy-eating plans, limit unhealthy fats and emphasize fruits, vegetables, fish and whole grains. Both dietary approaches have been found to offer important health benefits — in addition to weight loss — for people who have components of metabolic syndrome.
  • Stopping smoking. Smoking cigarettes worsens the health consequences of metabolic syndrome. Talk to your doctor if you need help quitting.
  • Managing stress. Physical activity, meditation, yoga and other programs can help you handle stress and improve your emotional and physical health.