If you have recently been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, you’ve probably heard your physician mention the terms insulin, insulin resistance, or insulin resistant foods.
But what does it all really mean? It’s important to have an understanding of your condition so that you can be proactive in combating the disease.
The more information you gain, the more you can curtail symptoms and possibly reverse the condition. Let’s take a few moments to gain a working knowledge of some common terms for those who have type 2 diabetes.
What is insulin sensitivity?
Insulin sensitivity refers to the body’s sensitivity level to insulin. In other words, how does the body react or respond to insulin?
Does it take a small amount to affect the body or higher amounts?
If your body is experiencing low sensitivity to insulin, then you are in fact insulin resistant. That means your body is resisting the proper use of insulin. Instead of taking glucose out of your blood and feeding it to your cells where it can be expended, the glucose stays in your blood.
When people are insulin resistant, the blood sugar levels slowly increase over time because the pancreas continues to produce more insulin for the cells. When the cells don’t receive it because of the insulin resistance, then the pancreas does its job by bringing more to the bloodstream. This is a serious, yet common, problem for those with type 2 diabetes.
What are the Insulin resistance symptoms?
When a person is insulin resistant, they may not have any outward symptoms. Actually, the blood levels may even test ok if you are in the prediabetes stages.
However, some people do develop outward signs that they are insulin resistance. One such sign is dark patches on the skin usually on the armpits, back of the neck, or groin area. This condition is called acanthosis nigricans.
People who have insulin resistance are also more likely to develop other problems such as high triglycerides, high blood pressure, and obesity.
What causes insulin resistance?
Scientists debate about the root cause of insulin resistance. Why do some people have a resistance to insulin and others don’t? Almost every part of the body has been blamed for being the problem, from the blood to the pancreas, to the brain and the liver.
It just goes to show that we need continued research on the subject. However, the researchers can agree on a few things. In a laboratory, they know how to trigger the condition in animals and people. The fastest and most reliable way to induce it in lab animals and humans is to give them high amounts of fat.
What this does is cause the lipids to be overloaded and thus insulin resistance occurs. High fat in the diet can occur through ingesting a high amount or by the body’s inability to burn off fat.
The second known trigger of insulin resistance is refined carbohydrates. This does not include natural healthy carbs found in your vegetables and fruit. These type of carbs are necessary for optimal health. However, the carbs found in your enriched breads, pastas, pastries, white rice, and cereals are the culprits.
What are the Insulin resistance symptoms in females?
Women are particularly affected by insulin resistance. Since insulin is a hormone, women facing perimenopause who are insulin resistance will experience the following problems:
- Unable to relieve menopause symptoms
- Increased risk of breast cancer
- Increased risk of endometrial cancer
- Weight gain (with approaching menopause)
Insulin resistant foods to avoid!
Discovering what foods to avoid will help you get your diabetes under control. Some foods simply must be avoided if you are insulin resistant. They are:
- White bread
- White rice
- Packaged items that use refined meal or flour
- Sugary drinks
The more you choose whole natural foods, the better off you will be.
How to reverse insulin resistance?
Reversing insulin resistance is possible with a careful eating regimen. Here are some tips to help you accomplish this:
- Follow the guidelines above about what foods to avoid.
- Be sure to get enough protein throughout the day.
- Eat small portions every few hours to keep blood levels steady.
- Use low glycemic foods as much as possible.
- Eat omega-3 eggs several mornings a week.
- Cease eating a couple hours before bedtime.
- Add plenty of fibre to your diet. It will stabilize blood sugar levels.
If you add exercise to the diet plan above, you increase the chances of reversing the condition.
What is Insulin resistance treatment?
Treatment for insulin resistance begins with healthy lifestyle changes. Eating the right foods at the right times throughout the day plus exercising regularly is the first line of defence.
One doctor states that eating less than 30 grams of fat a day had a significant impact on one of his patients. Thus, reducing your fat intake is important.
Doctors can also prescribe medication to help if you go on to get type 2 diabetes.
Dealing with a disease like type 2 diabetes is challenging and a serious problem if left untreated.
However, you can be successful in controlling your condition through proper eating, exercise, and medication.
What Causes Insulin Resistance? Lipid Overload
The Insulin Resistance Diet Protocol