The Insulin Resistance Diet Protocol
Understanding the cellular mechanisms of insulin resistance helps us choose more effective therapeutic interventions for the treatment and prevention of prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. Insulin resistance is present in individuals who are obese and those with diabetes mellitus. Several studies have found that an insulin resistance diet protocol and exercise can alter insulin signaling pathways and delay the onset of insulin resistance.
It’s estimated that the number of diabetes sufferers in the world will double from about 190 million to 325 million during the next 25 years. (1) It’s obvious that we need to pay more attention to our lifestyle habits and make some changes. An insulin resistance diet, similar to a diabetic diet plan, helps you lose excess weight and regulate your insulin and blood glucose levels in order to reduce your risk of developing prediabetes and diabetes.
Insulin Resistance Diet
Research suggests that the primary cause of insulin resistance is excess weight, especially excess fat around the waist. Fortunately, weight loss can help the body respond better to insulin. The Diabetes Prevention Program and other large studies indicate that people with insulin resistance and prediabetes can often prevent or delay developing diabetes by changing their diets to follow an insulin resistance diet, along with losing weight.
Here are seven ways to start eating an insulin resistance die
1. Limit Carbohydrates
Research published in Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity suggests that monitoring carbohydrate intake, whether by carbohydrate counting or experience-based estimation, remains a key strategy in achieving glycemic control. Although all carbohydrates can be incorporated into carbohydrate counting, for good health, carbohydrates from vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes and dairy products take priority over other carbohydrate sources, especially those that contain added fats, sugars or sodium. (2)
When it comes to grain flour products, it’s best to consume grains in their whole forms instead of flour form because flour tends to increase insulin resistance. If you need to use flour, choose those made from 100 percent whole grains, or try coconut flour or almond flour for an even healthier option.
2. Avoid Sweetened Beverages
All types of sugars are capable of raising blood sugar levels and contributing to insulin resistance, but some sources of sugar and carbs are more detrimental than others. For the first time, the American Diabetes Association’s nutrition recommendations now specifically advise the avoidance of sugar-sweetened beverages. These include soft drinks, fruit drinks, iced tea, and energy and vitamin water drinks containing sucrose, high fructose corn syrup, fruit juice concentrates and other artificial sweeteners. In a meta-analysis of cohort studies published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, individuals in the highest versus lowest quartile of sugar-sweetened beverage intake had a 26 percent greater risk of developing diabetes. (3)
Instead of drinking sweetened beverages, stick with water, seltzer, herbal or black tea, and coffee. When it comes to adding sweeteners to your beverages, or food, choose natural sweeteners like raw honey, organic stevia, dates, pure maple syrup or blackstrap molasses.
3. Eat More Fiber
Research shows that diets containing more than 50 grams of fiber per day are reported to improve glycemia in people with diabetes. Large prospective cohort studies report that the consumption of whole grains is associated with a reduced incidence of type 2 diabetes, but people should limit the amount of processed whole grain products consumed. (4)
Consuming high-fiber foods like artichokes, peas, acorn squash, Brussels sprouts, avocado, legumes and beans, flaxseeds, chia seeds, and quinoa help regulate insulin resistance. Load your plate with fresh veggies as often as possible — they’re high in fiber, low in calories, and contain an array of vitamins and minerals with anti-inflammatory properties.
4. Eat Healthy Fats
Research shows that the type of fatty acids consumed is more important than total fat in the diet. Individuals with insulin resistance are encouraged to select unsaturated fats in place of saturated and trans fatty acids. The impact of long-term intake of saturated fatty acids on insulin resistance is important because as people with diabetes decrease their intake of carbohydrates, they increase their fat intake, especially saturated fat from foods like baked goods and fatty beef. A study published in Public Health Nutrition suggests that saturated fat intake should be less than 7 percent of your total energy intake per day. (5)