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Insulin resistance

Can nuts improve insulin sensitivity even in diabetics?

Posted by on 5:17 am Diabetes, Diet, Eating, General Health, Insulin resistance, Nut consumption | 0 comments

It is important to be as insulin sensitive as possible.

When you are insulin sensitive, your insulin effectively transfers the glucose from you blood into the cells where you can use it for energy, and your blood glucose stays in a low and normal range.

Elevated blood glucose will cause problems because it will increase inflammation, free radicals and damage your tissue. That’s why people with diabetes are much more susceptible to chronic diseases.

High glycemic index carbohydrates will raise your blood glucose too high because this type of food is converted to sugar and absorbed fast. Especially flour (white bread), potatoes and white rice will do that, but foods like whole grain bread, at least the regular whole grain bread you normally get in the store, as well as brown rice, unless you have very little a one time, will do that also.

That’s why substituting those foods for something else can make a significant difference.

That is exactly what was done in the following study.

The research was carried out in a hospital research center.

A group of men and women with type 2 diabetes was put on one of three diets for 3 months (Jenkins DJA, et.al., 2018).

One group was put on a diet getting 477 calories from 75 grams of mixed nuts, one group got 471 calories from 3 whole wheat muffins, and one group got half a serving of the nuts and half a serving of the muffins.

The group consuming the 75 grams of nuts showed a reduction in Hemoglobin A1c, a marker of long term glucose control, compared to the group having the muffins.

Several cardiovascular risk factors also improved in group eating the 75 grams of nuts daily.

Nuts works better than whole grains if you want to improve your glucose control and cardiovascular risk factors.

75 grams of nuts are approximately 2 and a half handfuls of nuts.

Reference

Jenkins DJA, Kendall CWC, Lamarche B, Banach MS, Srichaikul K, Vidgen E, Mitchell S, Parker T, Nishi S, Bashyam B, de Souza RJ, Ireland C, Pichika SC, Beyene J, Sievenpiper JL, Josse RG. Nuts as a replacement for carbohydrates in the diabetic diet: a reanalysis of a randomised controlled trial.Diabetologia. 2018 Aug;61(8):1734-1747.

 

 

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3 Reasons Why Improving Insulin Sensitivity Will Improve Your Memory

Posted by on 10:00 am Brain, Insulin resistance, Memory | 0 comments

An association between hyperglycemia (which is high blood glucose levels) and cognitive dysfunction have been found in relatively healthy older individuals (Umegaki H, et.al, 2017). Insulin resistance which happens when the insulin sensitivity in your tissue decreases was found to be associated with memory impairment and the individuals with diabetes were worse.

The research makes it clear that if you want to improve your memory or prevent it from getting worse, you need to implement strategies to improve insulin sensitivity.

Even in young adults, hyperglycemia is associated with subtle brain injury and impaired memory and attention (Weinstein G, et.al., 2015).

When you eat a meal consisting of high glycemic index carbohydrates, your blood glucose levels will increase too much.

While you may tolerate that occasionally, eating that way every day will affect your insulin sensitivity, and it will not be good for your memory.

It has been proposed that toxins generated by insulin resistance transit across the blood-brain barrier into the brain, where they induce insulin resistance to the brain tissue, creating inflammation and cell death (De La Monte SM, 20120.)

Diets high in trans-fat and saturated fat adversely affect cognition. Fruit, vegetables, cereal, and fish are associated with lower risk of dementia and better cognition (Parrot MD, Greenwood CE, 2007). As you get more insulin resistant, ingestion of rapidly absorbed, high-glycemic index carbohydrates increase oxidative stress and inflammatory compounds.

Cereals were listed as associated with lower risk. But, you have to be careful with cereals because most cereals are not low glycemic index. For that reason, cereals may adversely affect your insulin sensitivity and not be your best choice. That does not mean you should avoid all carbohydrates. There are some healthy, very low glycemic index carbohydrates like beans, lentils, and vegetables.                                                                                                           

Also keep in mind that fish is contaminated now, especially with mercury. Contaminants have shown to interfere with the benefits of fish. It is better to use a high-quality fish oil to increase your omega 3 fatty acid intake. If you eat fish, wild salmon is still your best choice.

This is a summary of the 3 reasons why improving insulin sensitivity will improve your memory.                

Increasing insulin sensitivity and eating low glycemic index food, what you eat will not increase your blood glucose that high. It will also not increase oxidative stress and inflammatory compounds. You will end up with less cell death and brain damage and instead see the improved memory.


References:

Umegaki, H., Makino, T., Uemura, K., Shimada, H., Hayashi, T., Cheng, X. W., & Kuzuya, M. (2017). The associations among insulin resistance, hyperglycemia, physical performance, diabetes mellitus, and cognitive function in relatively healthy older adults with subtle cognitive dysfunctionFrontiers in aging neuroscience9.

Weinstein, G., Maillard, P., Himali, J. J., Beiser, A. S., Au, R., Wolf, P. A., … & DeCarli, C. (2015). Glucose indices are associated with cognitive and structural brain measures in young adults. Neurology84(23), 2329-2337.

Suzanne, M. (2012). Metabolic derangements mediate cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease: role of peripheral insulin resistance diseases. Panminerva medica54(3), 171.

Parrott, M. D., & Greenwood, C. E. (2007). Dietary influences on cognitive function with aging. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences1114(1), 389-397.

Greenwood, C. E., & Winocur, G. (2005). High-fat diets, insulin resistance and declining cognitive function. Neurobiology of aging26(1), 42-45.


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Recommendations that work. Improve your memory with the food you eat. This is not a regular diet program

Food that improves insulin sensitivity.

Posted by on 8:22 pm Diabetes, Eating, Fruit juice, Insulin resistance | 0 comments

You can effectively improve your insulin sensitivity just by avoiding some few things.

Last week I covered how saturated fat from animal sources may decrease insulin sensitivity.

We need fat. What will happen if we instead ate mono and polyunsaturated fat? That’s the type of fat we get from nuts, seeds and avocados.

Here is an example.

When study participants ate 25 g of pistachio nuts twice a day for 12 weeks, their blood glucose levels decreased, their hemoglobin A1c (a measurement of long term glucose control) decreased and even their systolic blood pressure decreased(Parham M, et al. 2014).

Not all carbohydrates are the same and will produce the same results.

You need to stay away from the high glycemic index carbohydrates. That’s the ones that will elevate your blood glucose to a high level. They require a lot of insulin to metabolize. Insulin moves the blood glucose from the blood into the cells where you can use it for energy.

Exposing your cells to high levels of insulin and glucose regularly, will with time make them less sensitive to insulin. Drinking 2 sugar sweetened beverages per day for 6 months induced features of the metabolic syndrome and fatty liver(Bray GA, Popkin BM, 2013). The metabolic syndrome is a condition which includes insulin resistance, elevated cholesterol and elevated blood pressure.

If you drink soft drinks, fruit juice or any other form of sweet beverage, do an experiment.

Stop drinking it and watch what happens.

Next week I will explain what kind of carbohydrates you can use to improve your insulin sensitivity.

 

 

Learn to Eat:  Recommendations that work. This is not a regular diet program.

 

Bray GA, Popkin BM. Calorie-sweetened beverages and fructose: what have we learned 10 years later. Pediatr Obes. 2013 Aug;8(4):242-8. doi: 10.1111/j.2047-6310.2013.00171.x. Epub 2013 Apr 29.
Parham M, Heidari S, Khorramirad A, Hozoori M, Hosseinzadeh F, Bakhtyari L, Vafaeimanesh J. Effects of pistachio nut supplementation on blood glucose in patients with type 2 diabetes: a randomized crossover trial. Rev Diabet Stud. 2014 Summer;11(2):190-6. doi: 10.1900/RDS.2014.11.190. Epub 2014 Aug 10.

Higher intake of this important mineral shows reduced risk for metabolic syndrome.

Posted by on 11:47 am Blood Pressure, Blood triglycerides, BMJ Formula, Cholesterol, Insulin resistance, Supplements | 0 comments

magnesium buttonPeople with metabolic syndrome have a cluster of symptoms. They are usually insulin resistant, they usually have high blood pressure and also high cholesterol and triglycerides.
The reviewed research included a total of 24,473 individuals and 6,311 cases of metabolic syndrome(Dibaba DT et al. 2014). The participants with the highest dietary intake of Magnesium were compared with the ones with the lowest intake.

The results showed that for every 100 mg per day increment in magnesium intake the overall risk of having metabolic syndrome was lowered by 17 percent.

Magnesium is a very important mineral, but all minerals should be taken together with other minerals since they affect each other. For example, magnesium regulates intra and extra cellular calcium levels, and if you only take zinc, you will lose copper.

The most common form of magnesium is magnesium oxide which is very poorly absorbed and irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Magnesium in the form of an amino acid chelate does not have that effect and is also much better absorbed and is a better choice.

 Dibaba DT, Xun P, Fly AD, Yokota K, He K. Dietary magnesium intake and risk of metabolic syndrome: a meta-analysis. Diabet Med. 2014 Nov;31(11):1301-9. doi: 10.1111/dme.12537.

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Surprising way artificial sweeteners induce glucose intolerance.

Posted by on 9:02 am Artificial Sweeteners, Bloodsugar, Diabetes, Eating, Eating, Glucose, Health, Insulin resistance, Tissue Recovery Blog, Type 2 diabetes, Wellness | 0 comments

Artificial sweeteners are used as an additive in both beverages, as well as food, to improve taste since most people prefer a sweet taste.
 

sweeteners picSince these sweeteners contain very few calories, they are also popular in diet beverages and diet foods. They are even used in products marketed to people with diabetes and promoted as a good alternative to sugar.

This seems to be a big mistake according to the reviewed research(Suez J, et al. 2014).
The results demonstrated that consumption of these sweeteners are causing glucose intolerance because they alter the composition of the intestinal bacterial flora in a negative way.
These results have been reproduced in both humans and mice.

The last thing you want to do is to consume a substance that will make you more glucose intolerant. This is very important for diabetics, but also for non diabetics because you don’t want to develop diabetes.

 

 

Suez J, Korem T, Zeevi D, Zilberman-Schapira G, Thaiss CA, Maza O, Israeli D, Zmora N, Gilad S, Weinberger A, Kuperman Y, Harmelin A, Kolodkin-Gal I, Shapiro H, Halpern Z, Segal E, Elinav E. Artificial sweeteners induce glucose intolerance by altering the gut microbiota. Nature. 2014 Sep 17. doi: 10.1038/nature13793. [Epub ahead of print]

Your gastrointestinal bacterias may influence your blood sugar.

Posted by on 8:42 am Bloodsugar, Diabetes, Eating, General Health, Insulin resistance, Probiotics, Supplements, Type 2 diabetes | 0 comments

A lot has been written about the bacterial flora of the gastrointestinal tract lately and how it can affect other areas of the body.
 

TabletThe reviewed research evaluated the effects of seven strains of friendly bacterias and how they may affect insulin sensitivity(Eslamparast T, et al. 2014).
 

Participants with the metabolic syndrome were given capsules containing 200 million of seven strains of friendly bacterias twice a day for 28 weeks.

Fasting blood sugar and insulin resistance improved significantly in the treatment group.

While we don’t know all the friendly bacterias yet, we know that quite a few can be beneficial to take. When you are traveling, it can be a good idea to bring a pro-biotic which does not require refrigeration since this may also help to prevent gastrointestinal problems if you are exposed to bacterias you are not used to.

 

 

 

Eslamparast T, Zamani F, Hekmatdoost A, Sharafkhah M, Eghtesad S, Malekzadeh R, Poustchi H.  Effects of synbiotic supplementation on insulin resistance in subjects with the metabolic syndrome: a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study.  Br J Nutr. 2014 Aug;112(3):438-45. doi: 10.1017/S0007114514000919. Epub 2014 May 22.