Insulin Resistance, Its Management and Treatment

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Mrs. X, a 40-year-old professional, works a lot at her desk and doesn’t move much. Lately, she saw she was gaining weight and feeling hungrier than usual. She also noticed some dark spots and tiny skin tags on her neck.

At first, Mrs. X thought these changes were just because of her busy job. But then she learned about insulin resistance, a condition she hadn’t thought much about before. She realized her weight gain and skin changes could be signs of this condition.

Realizing the seriousness, Mrs. X decided it was time to improve her insulin sensitivity, lifestyle and regulate her blood sugar more effectively.

Anyone, including men, can face similar issues. Insulin resistance can reduce insulin sensitivity, and promote insulin resistance, which leads to higher blood sugar levels.

But, by taking steps toward a healthier lifestyle, you can reduce your blood sugar and improve blood sugar regulation. 

Understanding insulin resistance is crucial. It’s a state where the body doesn’t use insulin effectively, causing blood sugar levels to rise. Let’s learn more about insulin resistance so that with the right knowledge and tools, you can lead a healthier life. 

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What is Insulin Resistance?

It’s a condition where your body does not respond well to insulin, causing high blood sugar levels. This can be due to various factors, including excess belly fat, a sedentary lifestyle, genetic predisposition, or conditions like PCOS.

Often, insulin resistance doesn’t show clear symptoms until it progresses, making early detection and management crucial.

Blood Sugar Chart

Risk Factors

  • Too much belly fat
  • Not enough exercise
  • Family history
  • Conditions like PCOS

Insulin Resistance Symptoms and Signs

Just like Mrs X, you might not notice any symptoms of insulin resistance. But over time, you could start feeling more hungry, tired, and might even gain some weight without knowing why.

  • You might see some dark patches or small skin tags on your skin, especially around your neck area.
  • These are signs that your body is having a hard time using insulin properly.

Skin Tags and Acanthosis

  • For women, insulin resistance can also lead to problems like missed or irregular periods and PCOS, which stands for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. It’s a condition that can affect your periods and make it hard to get pregnant.

Diagnosis

Your healthcare provider checks your medical history and clinical examinations; after examination, they usually perform blood tests to determine if you have insulin resistance. 

Insulin Resistant Treatment Plan

An effective treatment of insulin resistance includes lifestyle changes such as weight management, healthy eating, and staying active.

  • Check your blood sugar levels and consult with your healthcare provider if you notice any changes.
  • If detected early, it can often be reversed. Timely diagnosis is crucial for better management of the condition.
  • One effective insulin resistance treatment involves making lifestyle changes.
  • Even losing even a small amount of weight can improve insulin resistance significantly by enhancing the body’s ability to use insulin. 

1. Lifestyle Changes

Manage weight

  • Losing even a small amount of weight can significantly impact your health when dealing with insulin resistance.
  • A weight reduction can improve the body’s ability to use insulin effectively, lowering blood sugar levels and reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
  • Simple steps like portion control, mindful eating, and avoiding high-calorie foods can contribute to gradual, sustainable weight loss.

Eat healthy

  • Adopting a healthy diet is key to managing insulin resistance. Focus on including more fiber-rich foods in your meals, like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes.
  • Such foods can help you to regulate your blood sugar levels by slowing down your digestion process. Cutting down on sugary foods and drinks, as well as refined carbohydrates, is also crucial, as they can cause spikes in your blood sugar levels.
  • Instead, you can opt for whole foods that are less processed to keep your diet nutritious and balanced.

Stay active

  • Regular physical activity not only helps you in weight loss but also helps you to improve your insulin sensitivity. When you exercise, your muscles use glucose for energy, which helps lower blood sugar levels.
  • Moreover, physical activity promotes weight loss, which further aids in managing insulin resistance. Incorporate activities like walking, cycling, swimming, or yoga.
  • Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous activity each week, as recommended by health guidelines.

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2. Diet and Nutrition

  • Add Soluble Fiber

Include Indian staples rich in soluble fiber, such as oats (Jau), lentils (Dal), and flaxseeds (Alsi). Vegetables like okra (Bhindi) and fruits like oranges (Santra) and mangoes are also good sources.

  • Add Fruits and Vegetables

Opt for a colorful array of vegetables like spinach (Palak), fenugreek (Methi), eggplants (Baingan), and fruits such as guava (Amrood), papaya (Papita), and berries. These are nutrient-dense and fiber-rich, aiding in better insulin sensitivity.

  • Cut Down on Sugar and Carbs

Shift from white rice and refined flour (Maida) to whole grains like brown rice (Bhura chawal), millets (Bajra, Jowar), and whole wheat. Reduce intake of sweetened beverages and sweets like jalebi or gulab jamun, opting for natural sweeteners like jaggery (Gur) or honey.

  • Avoid Trans Fats

 Avoid fried and processed foods, such as samosas or packaged snacks, prevalent in Indian cuisine. Cook with healthier fats like mustard oil, ghee, or coconut oil.

3. Medication for Insulin Resistance

Your doctor might suggest other medications based on your health.

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Dealing with insulin resistance might seem daunting, but it’s a journey you don’t have to take alone. Simple changes in your daily routine can make a big difference.

You can start with the following approach:

  1. Begin with easy changes like choosing healthier snacks over sugary ones, such as adding more veggies, salads and fiber-rich food to your daily diet.
  2. Staying hydrated, getting enough sleep, and maintaining a positive outlook are equally important.
  3. Opting for the stairs over the elevator and finding ways to relax and lower stress. 
  4. Consistent medical check-ups and honest discussions with your healthcare provider are also important. They can guide you, adjust your treatment if needed, and offer support.

At Fitterfly, our multidisciplinary team, composed of diabetologists, nutritionists, physiotherapists, and psychologists, brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the table. We conduct a thorough assessment of each individual’s condition and, based on the diagnosis, craft a personalized care plan that aligns with the best clinical practices and the latest research.

All you get packed in our Diabetes Prime Program ensures that you’re not just receiving treatment but are also empowered with the knowledge and tools to take control of your health. To learn more about our program, you can consult with our experts, just give a missed call at 08069450746 and we will get back to you.

Remember: Every good choice you make is a step closer to a healthier version of yourself.

- By Fitterfly Health-Team