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How To Know If You Have Insulin Resistance

What Does It Mean For Your Health

Signs of Insulin Resistance Do You Have Them?

Insulin resistance comes in degrees. The more insulin resistant a person with type 2 is, the harder it will be to manage their diabetes because more medication is needed to get enough insulin in the body to achieve target blood sugar levels.

Insulin resistance isn’t a cause of type 1 diabetes, but people with type 1 who are insulin resistant will need higher insulin doses to keep their blood sugar under control than those who are more sensitive to insulin. As with type 2, people with type 1 may be genetically predisposed to become insulin resistant, or they may develop resistance due to being overweight. Some research indicates that insulin resistance is a factor in cardiovascular disease and other complications in people with type 1.

Eat Protein And Highly Nutritious Meat

What are you supposed to eat now that Ive attacked your sacred vegetables and carbohydrates?

The carnivore diet is the best way to reverse insulin resistance. Why? It maximizes nutrient density and cuts out all of the crap that causes insulin resistance in the first place.

To reverse insulin resistance and achieve optimal health, you need to center your diet around highly nutritious meat and animal products.

Animal products have the most nutrient density and in the context of a low carbohydrate diet, do not raise insulin.

Humans are carnivores. Were made to eat meat. Thats why our body responds so well to it. And why we develop chronic disease when we avoid it in favor of all the nutritional sludge weve invented in the last 10k years.

This allows you to maximize nutrient intake, while minimizing energy. Remember, insulin resistance is an energy overload problem. So you want to give your cells a chance to expend energy, rather than take it in.

This study showed that patients on a high protein diet 30% of their calories completely reversed type 2 diabetes . If this were a drug, doctors would be raving about it

But its the only thing more magical. And that is red meat.

Protein also improves satiation and will reduce hunger. And protein tends to be correlated with low insulin foods.

Another study below showed that a high fat diet will reverse ALL coronary heart disease risk factors including insulin vs a low fat diet.

How Insulin Resistance Progresses To Type 2 Diabetes

When you have insulin resistance, your pancreas makes extra insulin to make up for it. For a while, this will work and your blood sugar levels will stay normal.

Over time, though, your pancreas wonât be able to keep up. If you donât make changes in the way you eat and exercise, your blood sugar levels will rise until you have prediabetes. Your doctor will look for these blood test results:

  • Fasting plasma glucose test: 100-125
  • Oral glucose tolerance test: 140-199 after the second test
  • A1c results of 5.7% to 6.4%

If you arenât able to manage prediabetes, youâll be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes when your test levels reach:

  • Fasting plasma glucose test: 126 or higher
  • Oral glucose tolerance test: 200 or higher after the second test
  • A1c results of 6.5% or above

Recommended Reading: Can People With Diabetes Eat Bananas

Signs That Your Blood Sugar Is Imbalanced

So, you understand all of that, and now youre freaking out a little because you have a loved one whos stuck in this cycle. There are a few things you can do:

  • Send them this article.
  • Learn how to observe the symptoms of blood sugar imbalance.
  • Learn how to stabilize your blood sugar.
  • Lets start with the signs before we go on to the preventative strategies. You likely have imbalanced blood sugar and potentially insulin resistance if you have:

    • Sugar cravings

    Signs And Symptoms Of Insulin Resistance

    3 Symptoms of Insulin Resistance

    Insulin resistance may not cause any noticeable symptoms, so you can have insulin resistance and not know it. Symptoms dont usually occur until you develop prediabetes or type 2 diabetes.

    Also Check: Type 1 Diabetes Life Expectancy Adults

    Irregular Cycles And Infertility

    Insulin resistance leads to higher androgens which inhibit ovulation and causes hirsutism . Insulin resistance also leads to fewer SHBG proteins being made which makes even higher levels of androgens. And an imbalance in testosterone and estrogen ratio will cause an irregular cycle as well as infertility due to not ovulating.

    Who Should Be Tested For Insulin Resistance

    Insulin resistance tests may be ordered for people with certain genetic and lifestyle risk factors. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases , the following factors can make people more likely to develop insulin resistance and possibly prediabetes:

    • Being overweight or obese.
    • Having a history of polycystic ovary syndrome , gestational diabetes, heart disease, or stroke.
    • Health issues like high blood pressure and/or abnormal cholesterol levels.
    • Physical inactivity.
    • A history of diabetes in the immediate family.
    • Ethnicities such as African American, Alaska Native, American Indian, Asian American, Hispanic/Latino, Native Hawaiian, or Pacific Islander American.
    • Hormonal disorders like Cushings syndrome or acromegaly.
    • Taking certain medications like glucocorticoids, certain antipsychotics, and certain HIV medications.
    • Sleep problems, such as sleep apnea.

    The NIDDK also notes that excess fat in the abdomen and around the organs can be a cause of insulin resistance. A waist measurement of 40 inches or more for men and 35 inches or more for women is linked to insulin resistance, even if their body mass index is within a normal range.

    If weight loss goals are not currently a realistic option, there are still ways to improve your blood sugar levels through diet and activity. Consult with your doctor to learn about the best options for your health.

    Also Check: What Happens If You Miss Diabetes Medication

    Pilaf: How To Measure Insulin Resistance

    Insulin resistance is the root cause of many chronic diseases. Often, being diagnosed with diabetes precedes the diagnosis of other chronic conditions, including coronary artery disease, high cholesterol, hypertension, Alzheimers disease, cancer, stroke, and chronic inflammation.

    When reversing insulin resistance using your diet, the goal is to become as insulin sensitive as possible, to prevent against the development of these chronic diseases.

    In order to help you understand your level of insulin resistance, weve developed a convenient checklist to help you understand how to become as insulin sensitive as possible.

    Insulin Blood Sugar And Type 2 Diabetes


    Insulin is a key player in developing type 2 diabetes. This vital hormoneyou cant survive without itregulates blood sugar in the body, a very complicated process. Here are the high points:

    • The food you eat is broken down into blood sugar.
    • Blood sugar enters your bloodstream, which signals the pancreas to release insulin.
    • Insulin helps blood sugar enter the bodys cells so it can be used for energy.
    • Insulin also signals the liver to store blood sugar for later use.
    • Blood sugar enters cells, and levels in the bloodstream decrease, signaling insulin to decrease too.
    • Lower insulin levels alert the liver to release stored blood sugar so energy is always available, even if you havent eaten for a while.

    Thats when everything works smoothly. But this finely tuned system can quickly get out of whack, as follows:

    • A lot of blood sugar enters the bloodstream.
    • The pancreas pumps out more insulin to get blood sugar into cells.
    • Over time, cells stop responding to all that insulintheyve become insulin resistant.
    • The pancreas keeps making more insulin to try to make cells respond.
    • Eventually, the pancreas cant keep up, and blood sugar keeps rising.

    Read Also: How To Keep Blood Sugar From Dropping

    So What Is Insulin Resistance

    Many people associate the word insulin with diabetes, but you dont have to have diabetes or even be going through prediabetes to have insulin resistance.

    Insulin is a hormone in all of our bodies that stores blood glucose for energy. Insulin resistance refers to when the body doesnt have a normal insulin response, meaning that it isnt able to fully process the glucose that you eat. Your pancreas produces insulin, but there is resistance to this insulin, preventing glucose from entering your cells. This leads to glucose levels staying high in your blood, and eventually to be stored as fat.

    How Do Doctors Diagnose Insulin Resistance And Prediabetes

    Doctors use blood tests to find out if someone has prediabetes, but they dont usually test for insulin resistance. The most accurate test for insulin resistance is complicated and used mostly for research.

    Doctors most often use the fasting plasma glucose test or the A1C test to diagnose prediabetes. Less often, doctors use the oral glucose tolerance test , which is more expensive and not as easy to give.

    The A1C test reflects your average blood glucose over the past 3 months. The FPG and OGTT show your blood glucose level at the time of the test. The A1C test is not as sensitive as the other tests. In some people, it may miss prediabetes that the OGTT could catch. The OGTT can identify how your body handles glucose after a mealoften before your fasting blood glucose level becomes abnormal. Often doctors use the OGTT to check for gestational diabetes, a type of diabetes that develops during pregnancy.

    People with prediabetes have up to a 50 percent chance of developing diabetes over the next 5 to 10 years. You can take steps to manage your prediabetes and prevent type 2 diabetes.

    The following test results show Prediabetes2

    • A1C5.7 to 6.4 percent
    • FPG100 to 125 mg/dL
    • OGTT140 to 199 mg/dL

    You should be tested for prediabetes if you are overweight or have obesity and have one or more other risk factors for diabetes, or if your parents, siblings, or children have type 2 diabetes. Even if you dont have risk factors, you should start getting tested once you reach age 45.

    Don’t Miss: Hypoglycemia And Prediabetes

    The Advantages Of A Prepared Keto Diet Regimen Strategy

    The Keto diet is not just a fad. It is a popular weight-loss strategy that has actually helped numerous people slim down.

    The Keto diet is not just for weight loss. You can enjoy some other benefits by adhering to the keto diet plan, such as enhanced mental quality and also even more cheerfulness.

    Some people find it challenging to keep ketosis throughout the day since they can not control their appetite or really feel hungry all the time. Others might not manage their desires for sugar or carbs or have problem obtaining the correct fat intake throughout the day. To address these problems, you can select a prepared keto diet regimen plan to aid you remain in ketosis as well as reach your objectives!

    A keto diet is not only for individuals who intend to drop weight. It can additionally be made use of for combating epilepsy, diabetes mellitus, and Alzheimers Disease.

    Because it conserves time and money, the benefits of a prepared keto diet regimen plan can be seen. For example, if someone has to go to the shop every week for just one point, they will certainly spend way more than if they were given a prepared shopping list covering all their needs. The keto diet likewise gives you with several easy recipes that are easy to prepare as well as taste tasty! Insulin Resistance Diet Plan Pdf

    What Foods Help Prevent Type 2 Diabetes

    insulin resistance symptoms and recommended tests

    Foods that are particularly helpful for people trying to prevent type 2 diabetes and maintain a healthy weight are similar to the low glycemic index foods described above:

    • Vegetables and fruits provide fiber and vitamins.
    • Fat-free or low-fat dairy products provide calcium and strengthen bones. Avoid full-fat dairy products, as high-fat foods can worsen insulin resistance.
    • Whole-grain products have a lower glycemic index than refined grains and are rich in fiber.
    • Nuts contain fiber, protein, and healthy fats.
    • Some fish can be a source of “good” fats, such as salmon, herring, mackerel, or sardines.
    • Lean meats or beans are an excellent source of protein.

    Several studies have confirmed that weight loss — and even aerobic exercise without weight loss — increases the rate at which muscle cells take glucose from the blood as a result of improved sensitivity to insulin.

    Recommended Reading: When To Start Metformin A1c

    Tests To Diagnose Insulin Resistance

    Since insulin resistance usually has no symptoms, most people dont know they have it. While doctors regularly perform blood tests to check for diabetes and prediabetes, testing for insulin resistance isnt commonly done. The main reason is that there arent many good tests. However, there are signs and symptoms that may indicate you have it. And you check for these yourself! And if you have PCOS, there are a few blood tests that may also indicate you have it in addition to other tests that arent so useful. The best way to check for insulin resistance is a combination of a physical exam and certain blood tests.

    What Can You Do About It

    While it may not be possible to defeat insulin resistance entirely, there are ways to make the bodys cells more receptive to insulin.

    • Getting active is probably the best way to combat insulin resistance. Exercise can dramatically reduce insulin resistance in both the short and long terms. In addition to making the body more sensitive to insulin and building muscle that can absorb blood glucose, physical activity opens up an alternate gateway for glucose to enter muscle cells without insulin acting as an intermediary, reducing the cells’ dependence on insulin for energy. While this doesn’t reduce insulin resistance itself, it can help people who are insulin resistant improve their blood sugar control.
    • Weight loss can also cut down on insulin resistance. No single diet has been proved to be the most effective. Some evidence suggests, though, that eating foods that are low in fat and high in carbohydrates can worsen insulin resistance. Research has also shown that people who undergo weight-loss surgery are likely to become significantly more sensitive to insulin.
    • No medications are specifically approved to treat insulin resistance. Yet diabetes medications like metformin and thiazolidinediones, or TZDs, are insulin sensitizers that lower blood sugar, at least in part, by reducing insulin resistance.

    Read Also: Glucophage Side Effects

    How Does Insulin Resistance Become Diabetes

    In a person with prediabetes, the pancreas works increasingly hard to release enough insulin to overcome the bodys resistance and keep blood sugar levels down.

    Over time, the pancreas ability to release insulin begins to decrease, which leads to the development of type 2 diabetes.

    Insulin resistance remains a major feature of type 2 diabetes.

    What Is A Normal Insulin Response

    How Do You Know If You’re Insulin Resistant

    Lets talk about how insulin works normally. Here are the usual steps:

  • You eat a meal and your blood sugar spikes up.
  • Due to the high levels of sugar in your blood, your pancreas releases insulin.
  • Now, think of insulin as keys that open doors.
  • These keys travel to cells in your liver, muscle and fat cells and open the door for glucose to enter.
  • When glucose enters it is stored for energy and your blood glucose levels go back to normal.
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    What Causes Insulin Resistance

    Obesity , an inactive lifestyle, and a diet high in carbohydrates are the primary causes of insulin resistance. Some women develop insulin resistance while they are pregnant. This is called gestational diabetes. Certain diseases are associated with insulin resistance. That includes heart disease, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and polycystic ovary syndrome.

    Certain risk factors are associated with insulin resistance, including:

    • A family history of diabetes
    • A sedentary lifestyle
    • Race
    • Age
    • Hormones
    • Smoking

    Can Insulin Resistance Be Prevented Or Avoided

    You cannot prevent or avoid risk factors such as race, age, and a family medical history. You can take steps to reduce your insulin resistance by losing weight , exercising regularly, and eating a healthy diet. Choose healthy carbohydrates. For example, eat whole grain bread instead of white bread, drink water instead of soda, and reduce your intake of sugary foods.

    If you have or have had gestational diabetes, insulin resistance typically goes away after you give birth. However, you are at greater risk of being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes when you are older. That should be a warning to change your diet and lifestyle early so that you can delay it for as long as possible.

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    Medical Tests For Insulin Resistance

    There is no simple direct test for insulin resistance on the market, so most health care providers use a combination of tests along with other information about you to determine how insulin resistant you are. Some of the most useful tests are listed below:

    • Fasting insulin
    • Fasting triglycerides
    • HDL
    • HsCRP aka highly-sensitive C-reactive protein
    • Uric Acid. For more about insulin resistance and uric acid levels, read “Is Fructose Bad for You?” For more about insulin resistance, uric acid and mental health, read ***

    Ive put together a downloadable PDF of these insulin resistance tests with their target ranges to you can see how your numbers compare to healthy values. You may want to take the PDF to your next medical appointment and discuss it with your health care provider. Also included is a new quick and dirty formula you can use to estimate your own insulin resistance by plugging in your fasting blood glucose and triglyceride results.

    Read about how sugar and low-carbohydrate diets impact your mental health: “8 Reasons to Try Low-Carb for Mental Health“, “Bipolar Disorder and Low-Carbohydrate Diets” and “Sugar and ADHD.”

    If you are interested in trying a low-carbohydrate or ketogenic diet, my “Ketogenic Diets 101” is a good place to start to learn the basics.

    For wonderful information and inspiration, I highly recommend Dr. Andreas Eenfeldts website about LCHF diets:


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