India has been called diabetes capital. Considering the wealth of knowledge and ancient wisdom, this is a sad story.
What is diabetes?
In normal blood sugar metabolism, your body breaks food down into basic parts amino acids, Fatty acids, and sugars. Your pancreas releases insulin, which acts as a key to unlock the doors to your cells and use this fuel for energy.
Your body maintains your sugar level at around 83 mg / dl.
Your liver stores excess sugar as glycogen and releases it when blood sugar drops too low. Type 1 diabetes occurs when the part of your body that makes insulin is broken down. Type 2 diabetes occurs when your pancreas makes insulin but your body is unable to use it due to insulin resistance.
What is insulin resistance?
If you are heading for diabetes, the first marker to elevate is insulin, not blood sugar. Once insulin is high for a prolonged period of time, you will notice an increase in blood sugar.
Thus, fasting insulin and an insulin response test are essential if you are concerned about preventing metabolic dysfunction.
And considering that one in two people have diabetes, this is something you should be concerned about. Insulin resistance can lead to several chronic diseases, not just diabetes. It can increase triglycerides, LDL, lower HDL, increase blood pressure, and create oxidative stress.
What are some of the factors that cause insulin resistance?
Insulin resistance can occur when you have consistently followed a high sugar diet for many years. Your body becomes exhausted from the constant and frequent production of insulin. Eventually your pancreas will release insulin, but your body will not be able to use it as it should. This leads to increased insulin levels.
Chronic systemic inflammation interrupts communication between insulin and receptors. Being overweight and inactive can trigger insulin resistance. Even if you don’t have diabetes, then you increase your risk of developing it, along with many other conditions.
Insulin resistance can create excessive magnesium depletion, which can impact sleep and hormones. Poor sleep can in turn increase insulin resistance. Several antidepressants are linked to insulin resistance.
SSRIs promote insulin resistance while inhibiting insulin secretion; antidepressants can also be linked to the development of diabetes.
How is diabetes diagnosed?
You may not be sure when and how you might be diagnosed with diabetes. Regarding fasting blood sugar ranges, if you have levels above 125 mg / dl, you will be clinically diagnosed with diabetes. If your level is between 100 to 125 mg / dl you could be listed as pre-diabetic.
A range less than 100 mg / dl can be considered within the range, but note that the optimal ranges are between 78 to 88 mg / dl and anything outside of that can be triggers for symptoms like lack of sleep, fatigue, headaches, dizziness, anxiety, mood swings, hormonal imbalance, and brain fog.
Other markers that are useful to look at are HBA1C and insulin itself.
How Can You Avoid Diabetes?
- The main thing to always focus on is eating a diet that ensures stable blood sugar levels with every meal. One of the signs that you don’t have a stable blood sugar level is if you get angry or unstable about a delayed or missed meal. Your meals should contain fat, fiber and protein. Most people who consume little fat, suboptimal protein, high fiber and high sugars create constant insulin spikes, making them resistant to insulin and possibly pre-diabetic. I often see people who think they have a very healthy diet when in fact they mainly eat starch and sugars with every meal. Protein and fat help cushion the spike and fall in blood sugar, and when combined with fibrous non-starchy carbohydrates, they
- High stress causes your body to continuously increase cortisol. Cortisol causes insulin resistance and is also a cause of diabetes. Stress management is talked about everywhere today, but unfortunately few people actually apply mindfulness practices to support it.
- Lack of exercise and a sedentary lifestyle are one of the main triggers of diabetes. When you put your muscles under tension with exercise and resistance training, your glycogen stores increase, insulin receptors increase, the metabolic rate increases, and the mitochondria that actually burn glucose and fat also increase. High-intensity interval training, also known as HIIT, burns blood sugar very quickly, allowing your muscles to absorb glucose from your bloodstream. If you aren’t working out already, don’t start abruptly. When you have metabolic chaos inside, you have to grow slowly.
- If you are already in a pre-diabetic state, you may not have good results with foods with a high glycemic index. While the common recommendation of many nutritionists is to eat even foods with a high glycemic index, note that we wouldn’t be a diabetic capital without certain lifestyle triggers.
- Deficiencies that trigger inflammation include omega-3s, magnesium, folate, iron, zinc, selenium, and many more. If you are already pre-diabetic, it is important to add nutrients such as chromium, magnesium, zinc and B vitamins. You should also make sure that you do not miss any nutrients by eating a diverse diet.
- Fasting can be a great tool for reversing insulin resistance provided you are not in a situation with multiple health issues. Fasting should be strategic and incorporated after bringing the body to a better space. This is especially important for women. I have seen many women adopt intermittent fasting just to get rid of their hormones and end up with anxiety.
Note that the more insulin resistant your body is, the longer it will take to restore balance. When your blood sugar drops to a normal range of 78 to 88 mg / dl, you are considered to have reverse diabetes. The best approach would be to prioritize healthy eating, good sleep, optimal exercise, and stress reduction before you find yourself in a more difficult situation.