Diabetes is one of the most common chronic health conditions in American society, with numbers shooting to epidemic proportions in the last 10 years, especially in children. There are two types, Type 1 Diabetes and Type 2 Diabetes or insulin resistant diabetes. The former is the autoimmune condition and the latter is caused by poor lifestyle choices (research is now showing that 30% of Type 2 diabetics are suffering from an autoimmune condition as well).
Insulin resistant diabetes stems from the cells of the body becoming resistant to insulin. On every cell, there is an insulin receptor sight. Insulin works in the body much like a lock and key. The insulin goes to the receptor on the cell and essentially ‘unlocks’ it. This process allows for glucose to enter into the cells, providing the body with energy. Without insulin, glucose cannot enter the cells (think of insulin like a car and glucose the passenger).
The relationship between insulin and glucose is very important. Glucose is the main source of energy for our cells, and without glucose, the body has no fuel. It is imperative that the body is able to regulate insulin and glucose on its own for two main reasons. Any unused insulin is stored in the body as triglycerides (and you will see your cholesterol markers increasing) and any glucose is stored as glycogen (fat). So, triglycerides are fatty acids that lead to clogging of the arteries and usually high blood pressure and cholesterol. When excess glucose is in the body, it gets stored fat.
Symptoms of insulin resistant diabetes are brought on usually by poor diet and lifestyle. When the body is overloaded with glucose and insulin, the cell receptors shut off. Think of the people you know that eat tons of white flour, sugar, carbohydrates (breads, pastas, and rice). If this is all you eat, the body will eventually become tired of it all and the receptors will not allow the insulin and glucose into the cells = you gain WEIGHT! Worse yet, you develop Type 2 diabetes. On the flip side, if you only eat one or two meals a day, the body will go into starvation mode and store as much glucose as fat, so the body can burn it later to run your energy cycle = you gain WEIGHT! You do this long enough, and you too will develop Type 2 diabetes.
The most common way patients are being treated for insulin resistant diabetes by the traditional medical model is by way of additional insulin. This treatment can do a major disservice to anyone suffering from Type 2 Diabetes. When insulin receptors shut off from an overload of insulin, the remaining insulin is converted into triglycerides/cholesterol. These fatty acids clog arteries and lead to high blood pressure, cholesterol and increased risk for heart attacks and strokes. Many patients being treated this way in the traditional medical model continually experience symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes and wonder why their conditions persists. If the body is already ‘resistant’ to insulin, throwing more insulin into the equation will continue to ‘feed the fire’!
The best way to manage insulin resistant diabetes is through a proper food program and lifestyle change that can minimize the amount of sugar that goes into the body. In addition to a proper food program, special herbs can help insulin receptor sights function normally and once again and accept insulin and glucose back into the cells.
If you feel that your symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes are increasing yet you are taking insulin medication, please reach out to the Tustin Chronic Condition Center.
Remember, nothing will change until you do!