Insulin Resistance Vs Insulin Sensitivity
When it comes to insulin and insulin sensitivity vs insulin resistance, you are always on a continuum of how insulin sensitive your are are and what tissues are most effective at absorbing glucose. Managing this continuum is a fine balance between the type of food you eat, when you eat it, and how much activity you get. Insulin plays a big role in managing weight and body fat as does the amount of body fat you have effects how well you manage insulin. In this case, fat increase fat via the negative effect it has on your insulin management. Insulin is not only the hormone that we can most easily control through lifestyle choices it is probably one of the most important things you can do to feel better and achieve a lower body fat.
What is Insulin Resistance?
In 102 we discussed how when exposed to insulin too long and too often that the effect on insulin decreases. This happens because the insulin receptors on your cells no longer bind properly to insulin. “Insulin resistance is as if you have locks on the door to your cells.” – Charles Poliquin. When insulin can not signal your cells to uptake the glucose via the GLUT transporters discussed in 102 you end up with high levels of glucose and insulin in the blood at the same time and your body can’t use either of them. your bodies response to this is to release cortisol the stress hormone. This is basically a survival type response of your body trying to deal with the blood glucose via an alternative mechanism. Over time this leads to lower energy levels and more fat storage especially in the abdominal region.
What Are the Effects of Insulin Resistance?
- Weight Gain
- Fat Gain
- High Cortisol – Abdominal fat gain
- Increased Triglycerides –> risk factor for atherosclerosis and heart disease
- Inflammation –> more fat gain and more heart disease and CVD risk
- Type II Diabetes
- Imbalances in testosterone and estrogen.
- Loss of muscle and lean mass
- Poor sexual health
What causes Insulin Resistance?
- Eating too many high sugar or starch carbohydrates on a regular basis
- Poor overall nutrition
- Low minerals and nutrients levels often times caused by poor digestion
- Excessive body fat and/or not enough muscle tissue
- Lack of exercise
- Poor sleep quality and stress management