Exp Clin Endocrinol Diabetes 2018; 126(01): 14-22
DOI: 10.1055/s-0043-106439
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

The Role of Lipids in the Pathogenesis of Metabolic Syndrome in Adolescents

Shahnaz Taghizadeh
1   Nutrition Research Center, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, I.R. Iran
Mohammad Alizadeh
1   Nutrition Research Center, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, I.R. Iran
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received 01. März 2017
revised 01. März 2017

accepted 15. März 2017

08. November 2017 (online)


The increasing prevalence of childhood obesity is a driving force behind the increase in adolescent’s metabolic syndrome (MetS). Although there is no clear consensus about the pediatric definition for MetS, this syndrome is becoming very common among adolescents. It is characterized by insulin resistance (IR), dyslipidemia, abdominal obesity and hypertension, and is associated with a high risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus and CVD in adulthood. Due to the increasing prevalence of obesity, there is strong incentive to reduce the impact of the adverse health effects associated with MetS. We explored the etiological role of nutrient-derived metabolic stressors, especially fatty acids, in the development of obesity and MetS. We also reviewed the evidence that pro-inflammatory stressors may predispose to obesity-induced insulin resistance. This article presents the opinion that reducing the impact of metabolic and inflammatory stressors may reduce the adverse health effects of obesity, and slow the progression towards MetS and CVD in adolescents. Evidence so far is limited from pediatric dietary epidemiological and interventional studies investigating the potential preventive and therapeutic effects of dietary fatty acid modification. This review will further investigate our understanding of the interaction between fatty acids in the pathogenesis and progression of MetS in adolescents.