Tackling Insulin Resistance

Round is a Shape

Have you heard the one about the person with a little extra cushion in their middle? They say, “I’m in shape. Round is a shape!” Humorous though it is, that roundness in the middle may signify that your body doesn’t process the hormone insulin well. In other words, you might be insulin resistant.

What Does Insulin Resistant Mean?

Insulin resistance is a condition related to prediabetes, Type 1 diabetes and Type 2 diabetes. Insulin is a hormone our pancreas produces. When we eat something, our body breaks that food down into sugar, which fuels our body. In other words, food is our energy source. When the sugar (or glucose) from that food is digested, the pancreas gets a signal to produce insulin, which then carries that sugar (or energy source) to our liver, muscles, and fat cells so they can either use the energy from the food we eat to function or they can store it for later. After the level of sugar in our bloodstream subsides, the pancreas receives a hormonal signal to stop producing insulin. It’s quite an efficient process, unless, of course, there’s a glitch somewhere along the way.

When we’re insulin resistant, the glitch is that our cells can’t properly respond to the insulin being produced by our pancreas, which is called insulin resistance. Insulin resistance can wreak havoc with your endocrine system as well as other functions.

How Does One Become Insulin Resistant?

There are a variety of factors that contribute to insulin resistance. There is some evidence that there is a genetic component to the development of insulin resistance. There is also a likelihood of developing insulin resistance if you are:

  • Overweight or obese
  • Older
  • Sedentary

Insulin resistance is not only related to diabetes or prediabetes. There are several other conditions associated with it, including:

  • Systemic inflammation
  • High cholesterol
  • Increased risk for cardiovascular disease or heart attack
  • Non-alcoholic related liver disease
  • Metabolic syndrome

In addition to those diseases, insulin resistance can cause difficulty in blood sugar control for those who are diabetic. If a diabetic person is also insulin resistant, higher doses of insulin are required to control their diabetes.

What Can You Do About Insulin Resistance?

There are genetic factors that influence the predisposition of developing insulin resistance. There isn’t much you can do about that. But, there are lifestyle factors within your control that can make a difference. For example, you can:

  • Exercise (even 20 minutes, three times a week helps)
  • Eat cleaner
  • Consume fewer carbohydrates
  • Lose weight
  • Take medication to help sensitize your body to insulin

We’re Here To Help!

Vallee Health Repair in Quincy, IL provides care for everyone. You may be insulin resistant if you’re heavy in the middle, have skin tags or darkened patches of skin, or are urinating frequently. If so, Vallee Health Repair is available to help you determine whether you’re insulin resistant. We can provide medical support enabling you to lose weight, which is a significant factor in insulin resistance.  We provide comprehensive, compassionate care designed to help you live the best quality life possible.

Our provider is a certified family nurse practitioner licensed in Illinois. Tasha Valley, FNP-BC, FPA is committed to helping you live well. Call (217) 577-2992 or email us to tackle insulin resistance or any other health concern you have.

Disclaimer: The information contained here was not written by a medical doctor and is intended for informational purposes only. This is not a substitute for medical advice.