Insulin, a hormone produced by the beta cells, present in the organ called Pancreas, plays a role in regulating blood sugar levels. It assists in utilizing glucose for energy and storing glucose in the liver and muscles.
What are the Functions of Insulin within the Body?
1. Glucose Absorption:
Insulin encourages cells throughout the body, including muscle cells, liver cells and fat cells to absorb glucose. This allows the body to use glucose as its energy source.
2. Glycogen (Storage form of Excess Glucose) Formation:
Insulin facilitates converting glucose into glycogen for storage in the liver and muscles. Glycogen acts as a reserve fuel that can be accessed when needed.
3. Fat Synthesis (Lipogenesis):
Insulin promotes the conversion of glucose into fatty acids, which can be stored within cells or utilized as an energy source.
4. Protein Synthesis:
Insulin supports protein production throughout the body.
What is Meant by Insulin Resistance?
Insulin resistance refers to a condition where cells in your body do not respond adequately to insulins effects, on blood sugar levels.
When we consume food, our bodies break it down into glucose a form of sugar that provides energy to our cells. Insulin plays a role, in helping our cells absorb glucose from the bloodstream.
If someone has insulin resistance their cells don't respond effectively to insulin as they should. This means that their body needs to produce insulin in order to regulate blood sugar levels. Over time the pancreas may struggle to produce insulin resulting in blood sugar levels and potentially leading to the development of type 2 diabetes.
What are the Signs and Symptoms of Insulin Resistance?
• Elevated Blood Sugar Levels:
Insulin resistance can contribute to prediabetes a condition characterized by than normal blood sugar levels that do not meet the criteria for diabetes diagnosis.
• Increased Accumulation of Fat:
Insulin resistance is often associated with an increased build up of fat which is a risk factor for heart disease, stroke and other health issues.
• High Blood Pressure:
Insulin resistance can also lead to blood pressure, which's another risk factor for heart disease and stroke.
• Abnormal Cholesterol Levels:
Insulin resistance may result in elevated LDL cholesterol levels and decreased HDL cholesterol levels. Both of which increase the risk, for heart disease.
What are the Main Causes of Increase in the Risk of Developing Insulin Resistance
• High Levels of Sugar in the Blood:
Insulin resistance can lead to prediabetes, a condition where blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes.
• Excess Abdominal Fat:
Insulin resistance is often linked to increased fat, which's a risk factor for heart disease, stroke and other health issues.
• Blood Pressure:
Insulin resistance can also contribute to blood pressure, another risk factor for heart disease and stroke.
• Cholesterol Levels:
Insulin resistance can result in elevated LDL (cholesterol levels and low HDL (good) cholesterol levels both of which are risk factors for heart disease.
How to Prevent the Development of Insulin Resistance?
• Maintain Ideal Weight:
If you are overweight or obese even a slight reduction in weight can help improve your sensitivity to insulin.
• Engage in Activity:
Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise on most days of the week.
• Follow a Diet:
Focus, on consuming amounts of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Limit your consumption of beverages processed foods and unhealthy fats.
How to Manage Insulin Resistance?
Here are some tips to help manage insulin resistance.
1. Get Adequate Sleep:
It's important to prioritize getting sleep because lack of sleep can lead to increased production of the stress hormone cortisol, which can interfere with insulin sensitivity.
2. Manage Stress:
Finding ways to cope with stress, such, as practicing yoga, meditation or spending time in nature can be beneficial in managing insulin resistance.
[ Also Read: How Stress Impacts Blood Sugar Levels in Non Diabetics Also? ]
Best Treatments for Insulin Resistance:
Now let’s explore the treatments for insulin resistance:
There are medications that can effectively address insulin resistance. It is advisable to consult with a doctor and undergo lab investigations before starting any medication.
2. Natural Plant Extracts
Some natural plant extracts, like mulberry leaf extract and green apple peel extract have been proven to enhance the body’s sensitivity to insulin and reduce insulin resistance. Additionally there are trademarked high quality products like Glubloc (used in Moder/ate tablets) that offer benefits.
3. Lifestyle Changes:
Making modifications and engaging in physical activity can also contribute towards reducing insulin resistance at different levels.
Regardless of the method chosen for managing insulin resistance it is important to make efforts towards making choices for a future free, from disease.