Metabolic syndrome is a prevalent condition in Western and developing countries (20 to 30 % of adults) that represents a serious public health threat. One of the defects in metabolic syndrome and in its associated diseases such as hypertension, dislipemia, insulin resistance and obesity (mainly visceral), is the increase in general oxidative metabolism with development of oxidative stress. This implies the overproduction (and/or reduced degradation) of reactive oxygen species that usually overrides the physiological antioxidative defense. Thus, there is an increase in the oxidant-to-antioxidant compounds’ ratio. In this chapter, we comment and revise some of our evidence on this topic obtained in an experimental model of metabolic syndrome. In particular, we have found that chronic consumption of cola beverages, either sucrose- or artificially-sweetened cola, leads to a condition that reproduces the typical features of human metabolic syndrome. Following the characterization of our model, we have succeeded in replicating this model as shown in our first studies. Here we share some of the most important findings in relation with oxidative metabolism both general and tisular, with particular emphasis on hypertriglyceridemia, pancreatic and renal changes. Oxidative alterations and inflammatory mechanisms are concurrent in otherwise healthy young adult rats following cola beverage drinking for long periods.
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