What is Insulin resistance?
Insulin resistance (IR) is all over the news, but a clear and concise appreciation of this conditioin that, if left untreated, can lead to type 2 diabetes will make identifying it and treating it doable.
Insulin; What does it do?
Insulin is a hormone produced by the beta cells of the pancreas. Its primary function is to regulate carbohydrate, protein, and fat metabolism. Insulin acts like a key to open cells in the liver as well as muscle and fat cells to absorb glucose from the blood. The glucose is either used as energy or stored for future use (glycogen or fat stores).
In normal metabolism, an exacting amount of insulin is released to match the circulating glucose and enables blood glucose to return to the normal range after a meal and between meals. Insulin is integral in allowing the body to utilize glucose as energy.
Insulin resistance; What happens when it occurs?
Insulin resistance (IR) occurs when the fat and muscle cells of the body resist the normal effect of insulin. With IR, insulin can no longer open the cell door to enable glucose to enter. Because the fit is no longer correct, insulin has a lesser effect. Fewer cells doors open and glucose accumulates in the the bloodstream unable to enter the cells. As a result, the pancreas is forced to produce still more insulin in an effort to open cells and reduce blood glucose back to normal.
Risk factors for IR
IR is at the root of the metabolic syndrome; a cluster of associated medical conditions including abdominal obesity, hypertension, hyperglycemia, and hyperlipidemia. Increased insulin resistance speeds the progression from metabolic syndrome to pre diabetes to type 2 diabetes. IR is a risk factor for diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, non alcohol fatty liver disease, and polycystic ovarian syndrome, It is more common in the races that are more apt to develop type 2 diabetes; African American, Latino, Native American, and Asian American groups.
IR is thought to be rooted in genes and increased by environmental stressors such as overweight, high carbohydrate intake, emotional or physical stress, inactivity/lack of exercise, infection/illness, surgery, certain medications
IR can be managed with proper diet, physical activity, and if need be, medications.
If IR Is not managed, it can precede to the diagnosis of type 2 diabetes. For a period of time before type 2 diabetes is diagnosed, a person will have normal blood glucose and insulin. At some point, the switch flips to insulin resistance. It is possible that a series of environmental stressors triggered IR to occur. The more stressors that are present, the faster the increase in IR.
When does IR become type 2 diabetes?
As long as the pancreas can compensate for IR by producing greater amounts of insulin, blood sugar will remain in the normal range. In time, if the pancreas fatigues and can longer keep up with the increased need for insulin, blood glucose begins to rise. This is when metabolic syndrome can proceed to pre diabetes. If IR continues to be out of control, pre diabetes will change to type 2 diabetes. In the case of type 2 diabetes, there is often a situation of inadequate amount of insulin and a high level of IR.
Surprise: A person with insulin resistance can have high levels of glucose and insulin in the blood at the same time.
What can I do to correct insulin resistance, lose weight, and improve my labs; even decrease or eliminate medications?
I wrote The Metabolism Miracle, Revised Edition to stop insulin resistance and reset metabolism. It helps prevent further weight gain, inch gain, fatigue, loss of focus, elevations in blood glucose, blood pressure, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides…and stops decreases in Vitamin D.
Like a support group?
Join me on http://www.miracle-Ville.com.
For the month of October, Miracle-Ville is having Oktoberfest. Join for one year and get a $10.00 refund AND an autographed copy of the brand new “Metabolism Miracle, Revised Edition FOR FREE!
Conclusion….Millions of people have an identifiable precursor to type 2 diabetes, but may not even know about it. IR, left uncontrolled, can progress to type 2 diabetes. Knowing what it is and the environmental stressors that can push its buttons can help you prevent or reverse pre diabetes or prevent or control type 2 diabetes.