By Dr Harold Gunatillake - Health Writer
These two words you find in articles in relation to diabetes. Do you know what they really mean, and how serious it could be in relation to your health and wellbeing?
Insulin is a hormone secreted in specific cells called islet cells in the pancreas gland lying behind your stomach, in the upper part of your abdomen.
The most common reason why you get insulin resistance is consuming excessive carbs and foods containing added sugars, on a daily basis. Yes, the pancreas will then increase the production of insulin. With time even with the increased make of insulin, the blood sugar may not be brought to normal levels. This is the situation where we say that the pancreas is strained to produce an inferior less active variety of insulin which is resistant to maintaining a normal sugar level in your blood.
Insulin has no influence on the metabolism of fats and proteins, directly.
The main function of this hormone is a true ‘courier service’ accompanying glucose in your blood to the fat cells, liver, muscles and so on. If the pancreas does not produce sufficient amount to cope with the demand of glucose from digested carbs, then the sugar will accumulate and float in your blood, leading to many complications as seen in people with poor diabetic control. This excess accumulation is called, ‘hyperglycaemia’.
In a situation, where the pancreas secretes insulin more than required and hyper-sensitive, or as in tumours called insulinomas, or when taken an overdose of insulin accidently, the sugar level will drop in your blood. This condition we call, ‘hypoglycaemia, a dangerous situation to be in.
So long as the insulin secretion goes hand in glow situation with glucose physiologically, the blood glucose level will remain at the normal range.
When your sugar level reaches 126mm/dl, then you qualify to become a ‘pre-diabetic’ by definition, also called ‘spring diabetes’.
Your chance of getting insulin resistance can increase if you do not daily exercise, have high blood pressure, or smoke. It is possible to get insulin resistance with low HDL (good cholesterol), or high levels of fat (triglycerides) in your blood. You could even end up with heart disease, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease.
Some people may be resistant to insulin due to a history in the family. If your parents have diabetes, it is most likely that you would get insulin resistance.
The easiest test to check whether you have insulin resistance is to take a sample of blood, fasting or otherwise and check the blood sugar level. You could also have a blood test called ‘HbA1c” to check the average level of your blood sugar during the past three months. If the numbers are high, will suggest you have insulin resistance.
Eating too many carbs and sugars strain your pancreas to secrete more insulin. This strain for a long period may produce insulin that could become resistant to glucose. The pancreas may have to work overtime to produce more insulin to compensate for the resistance. If further neglected, the pancreatic cells that make insulin can burn out, leading to diabetes. In such a situation you may need insulin therapy in the injection form to control your blood sugar, on a daily basis.
Watch your calories and glycaemic load (GL), cut back on fried foods, sugary drinks (sodas) and salted processed foods.
Conclusions: Changing for a healthier lifestyle and being aware of the condition may help you to avoid insulin resistance.
Copyright © 2002 ~ 2016 Ozlanka®.
Ozlanka is not responsible for the contents of this article or for any external internet sites that may be linked through this website.
The views expressed above are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions or concepts of the webmaster or the owners & operators of Ozlanka.
Ozlanka and Auslanka are registered trademarks