Insulin resistance is a metabolic condition that is common among people who struggle with weight and is a primary reason that many people find weight loss and management so difficult. Many people don’t really know what insulin resistance is, and they aren’t aware of how much of an impact it can have on your weight loss. In my experience as a medical weight management expert, I have found that my patients can easily describe symptoms of insulin resistance to me but are not aware that they may suffer from this condition, as it is not as commonly discussed as other health-related conditions.
Insulin is an important hormone whose primary purpose is to allow glucose (sugar) to enter your body’s cells. Individuals who experience insulin resistance usually produce the right amount of insulin but, due to changes in the cell membrane, insulin does not have the proper effect on the cell. The excess sugar is stored as fat.
Insulin resistance develops in response to weight gain, storage of body fat and aging. Over time, insulin-producing cells of the pancreas damage and die as a result of over-production of insulin to combat resistance. This is when the real trouble begins. Elevated blood sugar (also called glucose intolerance), pre-diabetes, borderline diabetes and type II diabetes are all outcomes related to insulin resistance.
Symptoms of insulin resistance:
1. Weight gain
2. Afternoon energy slumps
3. Difficulty sleeping
4. Mood swings
5. Frequent headaches
Being resistant to insulin can also lead to an increased risks for breast cancer, pancreatic cancer, lymphoma, dementia, kidney disease, nerve damage and heart attack.
Insulin resistance can be easily diagnosed by a physician and requires only a few simple tests. My advice to you if you are worried that you may be insulin resistant is to proceed with these tests and also focus on ways you can lead a healthier life. There are several things you can do in the present to reduce insulin resistance and avoid developing conditions like diabetes.
My job is to help you avoid these risks.
Here is a list of ways to reverse insulin resistance and increase your health and vitality:
1. Concentrate on weight loss.
2. Be sure to include adequate lean protein in each meal.
3. Monitor total carbohydrate intake per day and per meal.
4. Take EPA/DHA (omega-3) anti-inflammatory fish oil supplement, daily.
5. Exercise for 30 minutes or more at least 4 days per week.
By making yourself aware of these symptoms, and by taking the steps to eat healthier, you are on your way to living healthy, and losing weight!