Optimize Your Insulin and Prevent Diabetes

insulin, cortisol, blood sugar, stress, adrenal

Insulin has been a popular hormone recently. I keep talking about this because it is so important. There is a big focus on sugar, but the real problem is what sugar does to insulin. Insulin resistance and diabetes are big problems in our culture today. In 2014, the CDC reported that 29.1 million people have diabetes and 8.1 million of those people are still undiagnosed.(1) 1.7 million adults were diagnosed in 2012 alone.

insulin, cortisol, blood sugar, stress, adrenal

Insulin resistance occurs when more and more insulin is needed to “unlock” the glucose channel seen above. The insulin receptor is no longer as sensitive to the insulin.
Don’t let yourself become part of the statistic. Here are a few natural ways to prevent diabetes and improve your health:
  1. Eat only 3 meals per day with 1 optional snack. This goes against contrary beliefs that we need to eat least 6 meals per day, I get it. But, how does that make sense when you look at it from an insulin’s point of view? Every time you eat a carbohydrate/sugar, insulin increases and your body goes into a “fat storage” mode. So do you want to do that 4 times per day or 6 times? I’ll let you be the judge!
  2. Do not eat past 7 PM. I mean who hasn’t heard this? This will help improve your sleep too.
  3. Eat your carbohydrates earlier in the day.
  4. Exercise – Studies show that even if you do not lose weight, exercising will still improve insulin resistance. The longer you exercise, the more sensitive your insulin becomes at a moderate-to-vigorous pace. Work up to this if you are just beginning an exercise program. (2)
  5. Limit or avoid processed foods – this includes chips, candy, crackers, pasta, baked goods, bread, and even processed meats. Opt for foods like brown rice, quinoa, buckwheat, steel-cut oats, free range chickens, grass-fed beef, and more and more veggies.
  6. Sleep at least 7 hours per night – even just 1 night of sleep deprivation causes insulin resistance! (3)
  7. Manage your stress – if we can’t avoid stress, then we need to learn how to deal with stress. This means developing healthy coping mechanisms. Make it a habit by practicing when you are not feeling stressed. Create a list of 10 things you can do – reading, going for a walk, taking a bath, mediation, grabbing coffee with a friend, writing, painting, reflect on what you are grateful for, stop to breathe and refocus for 5 minutes, yoga, exercise. What is on your list?

If you are unsure if you have insulin resistance or diabetes or you are struggling to control your blood sugars, Dr. Katie can help. She uses natural treatments for insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, and diabetes. You do not need to do this alone.

dr-katie

  1. https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/pubs/statsreport14/national-diabetes-report-web.pdf
  2. http://ijbnpa.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1479-5868-10-10
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20371664

Lose the Weight ~ Eat Bacon?!

Kissing Pig, bacon, health

Kissing Pig, bacon, health

Obesity is a major issue in the United States today. In fact, as of 2013, 25-30% of Minnesota adults were considered obese according to the CDC.1 That’s 1 in every 4 adults! And, let’s face it – losing weight is difficult. According to the Monte Nido Eating Disorder Treatment Center, “95% of diets fail and most will regain their lost weight in 1-5 years”.2 So that begs the question – what can we do?! How can we go about losing excess weight and living healthier lives? 

The answer to losing weight is quite simple – ditch the carbohydrates according to Gary Taubes in his book, “Why We Get Fat”.3 Contrary to popular belief, it isn’t fat that causes us to be overweight, but those pesky carbs. But how can this make sense? The answer lies in a little chemical called insulin.

Insulin is a hormone with a simple job – stimulate our cells to take in extra glucose from our bloodstream after a sugary snack. Insulin is surely our friend – continually keeping our blood sugar in balance…until it doesn’t. Insulin is also related to fat metabolism, or fat burning, in our body.3

The hormones lipoprotein lipase (LPL) and hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL) are also directed by insulin. The first, LPL, is a cell membrane protein responsible for pulling the fat from our bloodstream into fat cells. Insulin activates this protein, especially in our abdominal regions, which causes more fat storage in the body. The second hormone, called HSL, is inhibited by insulin activity. HSL is responsible for breaking fat down to be used for energy.

Therefore, when insulin is around, we do two things:

  1. Store more fat

  2. Stop the body from burning fat.3

It seems that avoiding carbohydrates could surely help our body in burning its fat stores. Therefore, a great way to shed some excess weight would be to avoid foods that spike our blood sugar (and insulin secretion) such as bread, cereal, pasta, beer, fruit juice, soda, potatoes, rice, and corn.3 Furthermore, don’t be afraid to eat fat and protein – they have no effect on insulin secretion and will keep you from feeling hungry for a longer time period. If you want to lose weight, it may be time to exchange that breakfast cereal for a little bacon!

 

Health

 

 

Meet Dr. Kelsey Perreault ~ She is a chiropractor at ChiroCenter in Bloomington, MN. Helping her patients reach their health goals through Gonstead chiropractic care is one of her passions.

 

 

  1. http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/prevalence-maps.html
  2. http://www.montenido.com/pdf/montenido_statistics.pdf
  3. Taubes, Gary. “Why We Get Fat”.