About 170,000 people in Utah have diabetes, and scores may still be undiagnosed. Most may have gone through insulin resistance.
Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas that helps deliver sugar to the cells. When these cells become less sensitive or receptive to insulin, it forces the body to create more of the hormone. It also allows blood sugar to “pile up.”
Although insulin resistance is not diabetes (and with interventions don’t have to end up into a chronic disease), it is a prelude to that. Any breakthrough or news about it can help you talk to your GP and, most of all, do everything to manage or reverse it.
Here are the latest pieces of information about insulin resistance:
- ALA Can Improve Insulin Sensitivity
ALA or alpha-lipoic acid is a naturally occurring compound in the body. You can also get it from supplements and food like broccoli or red meat.
It is already a well-known antioxidant for people suffering from diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage caused by diabetes). However, new studies reveal that it may also improve the cells’ sensitivity by reducing oxidative stress.
Oxidative stress refers to a state wherein free radicals accumulate more than antioxidants. It can leave many healthy cells unstable, leading to oxidative damage and, later on, inflammation. This may prevent the cells from responding properly to insulin or worsen the symptoms and effects of insulin resistance.
- CBD May Preserve Pancreatic Health
Insulin resistance forces the pancreas to work harder. Like an exhausted machine, it could become less effective in producing the hormone. Interestingly, a trip to a CBD store, might help.
As a cannabinoid, CBD attaches to the endocannabinoid receptors of the body. This allows the substance to help reduce feelings of pain and issues affecting the nerves. It also reduces the risk of inflammation, especially on vital organs like the heart and the pancreas. Initial research also suggests that CBD may help improve the sensitivity to insulin of the fat cells.
- Severely Obese Patients Benefit from Weight-loss Surgeries
Weight loss surgeries are risky, but they can also help severely obese patients reset their health and hopefully prevent life-threatening illnesses like diabetes.
In a 2020 study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, over 50% of morbidly obese patients experienced diabetes remission on both laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding (LAGB) and Roux-en-Y surgery, which creates a pouch that bypasses the stomach.
The remission rate, though, was four times higher with the latter than with the former. Moreover, the effects were more noteworthy among younger patients with reduced insulin resistance markers or insulin use.
- HIIT Helps Decrease Insulin Insensitivity, Particularly for Women
One of the best ways to lower the risk of insulin resistance is to exercise, but some types may be better than others in enhancing cellular sensitivity to the hormone.
In the 2017 research in Frontiers involving 40 sedentary women, high-intensity interval training (HIIT) boosted their healthy cardiometabolic health metrics within 10 weeks. These include glucose levels and blood pressure.
They also lost body fat, which further decreases the odds of insulin resistance by bringing down the risk of inflammation. However, the results were more impressive among highest-risk women.
Note, though, that HIIT is a high-impact rigorous exercise. It may not be ideal for some groups like adults with joint pain or cardiovascular issues. They can pursue other forms of workout like yoga, which helps improve blood circulation and pressure.
Other types of research also consider brisk walking a good exercise. Studies showed that those who walked at moderate speeds had lower glucose levels in their blood later.
There are many ways to diagnose insulin resistance today, so you can get yourself checked to know your risks. But diagnosis is just half of the equation. The rest involves the steps to take to prevent it from getting worse. Use these studies for some ideas.