What is “insulin resistance”?
This is a condition that happens over time, usually years or decades. First let me explain what insulin is: Insulin is a hormone secreted by the pancreas gland. The purpose of insulin is to open channels in the cells all over the body and let glucose get into the cell. It’s like a key that opens the doors to the cells and when the doors are open, the glucose goes inside. The glucose or sugar is then used to create energy and drive various processes in the cell. When this doesn't happen, the sugar or glucose collects outside the cells in the blood stream and creates the condition of insulin resistance and later, diabetes. The reason this mechanism fails can be because after years of eating a high sugar diet or junk food diet. The pancreas cannot keep up with the demand for the insulin to do this job. It starts by the mechanism working too slowly…the insulin doesn't work as well…it’s like the insulin as a key is rusty and you have to jiggle it a little to get the door to open up. The pancreas will need to secrete higher amounts of insulin to get the cells to open up and accept the sugar—THIS IS “INSULIN RESISTANCE”. The cells will require more insulin over time until it gets to the point where the pancreas cannot keep up with the demand. This is when diabetes occurs and medication is needed to help insulin work well or insulin injected into the body is needed to get the sugar into the cells at all.
What symptoms might a person notice when this is happening?
The first symptoms I see are usually fatigue and weight gain. We will also see the triglycerides on a test of the blood fats (called a lipid panel) start to become elevated. Many people will also have hypoglycemic episodes…this is where the blood sugar falls to a low point and makes the person tired, sluggish, irritable and sometimes shaky. Often, people will notice that if they have some juice or something to eat, they feel better very soon after. This fall in blood sugar is often after the blood sugar was very high from a high intake of carbohydrates—these can be anything from soda, candy and cookies to juice or too much bread, baked goods or pasta.
Recommended Nutritional Program
Both Type 2 (adult onset) and Type 1 (pancreas no longer produces insulin - usually juvenile onset but can occur in adulthood) can benefit.
- Basic Medical Food: Ultra Glucose Control
- Wellness Essentials® Healthy Balance daily packets, 1 packet per day can be split into 1/2 packet with breakfast and 1/2 packet with dinner. Targeted Blood Sugar Support to maintain a healthy balance of energy throughout the day, your body may need extra nutritional support for healthy blood sugar and insulin levels. Each once-daily packet contains: 1 PhytoMulti™ tablet, 2 EPA - DHA Extra Strength Lemon-Flavored® softgels, 2 MetaGlycemX™ tablets, and 2 Meta Lipoate® 100 (alpha lipoic acid tablets).
- Fenugreek Plus, 1 with breakfast and 1 with dinner. Fenugreek Plus® features concentrates of three highly valued herbs traditionally used to support healthy glucose metabolism . The unique, odorless extract of fenugreek is highly concentrated for clinically effective levels at a lower dose.
NOTE: Also consider doing a detox first with either the Clear Change 10-day detox program or UltraClear PLUS for 28 days, as per my “DETOXIFICATION” handout. This will help get the necessary dietary changes in place.
DIET NOTE: Type 2 Diabetes is on the rise in both adults and children in America due to our poor food choices and lack of true understanding of a healthy diet. I RECOMMEND THAT ALL OF MY PATIENTS REMOVE WHEAT AND REDUCE GRAIN INTAKE IN THEIR DIET. Please see the article I give to virtually all of my patients “Weighing in on Wheat”, an interview with Dr. William Davis, author of "Wheat Belly", which briefly outlines the pitfalls of modern wheat and why we should all be removing this food from our diets. For more info, read “What’s the problem with wheat and gluten?” and “Gluten Free” handout for tips on what to eat and what not to eat. Also visit Dr. Davis’s website, www.wheatbellyblog.com for more detailed information on how to make healthy dietary changes. Also, make sure to check out the General Wellness Program for healthy eating tips.
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