Insulin resistance occurs when the body does not respond to insulin as expected. This can lead to higher levels of circulating insulin, higher blood sugars, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes.
Insulin resistance is associated with conditions like obesity, polycystic ovary syndrome, and other endocrine disorders like Cushing’s syndrome or acromegaly. Some medications can contribute to insulin resistance including corticosteroids, cyclosporine, niacin, and protease inhibitors for HIV.
Aging, high dietary sodium intake and use of animal-derived (beef and pork) insulins are also associated with insulin resistance. Beef and pork insulins are no longer available in the United States due to the widespread availability of human insulin products.
Because insulin resistance increases the level of circulating insulin, it can increase storage of glucose in fat cells, leading to weight gain.
A combination of decreased food intake and increased physical activity to achieve weight loss will improve insulin sensitivity and decrease the likelihood of developing diabetes.
Eating a diet with non-starchy vegetables, high fiber foods, lean meats, fish, and nuts, and avoiding sweetened drinks can help improve insulin sensitivity. The Mediterranean diet is one example.
Low carbohydrate diets have been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and lipid profiles, and promote weight loss. A ketone drink supplement containing ketone monoesters has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity in the short term also, suggesting that the presence of ketones in the blood improves insulin sensitivity, independent of weight loss. More about that here
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For resources to save money on insulin or other prescriptions, visit https://www.insulinhelp.org/