Sleepy After You Eat? Could Be Insulin Resistance

Hello again:

It is estimated that 2/3 of Americans have some level of insulin resistance, and 90% of those with the condition do not know they have it. When we repetitively over-eat and/or eat the wrong kind of foods that supply too large of a carbohydrate load, we are demanding our bodies to make insulin. Insulin is needed to pull blood sugar out of the blood and into the tissue. When we over-consume foods that turn into sugar, we can over-tax the insulin system which can lead to either insulin resistance (too much insulin) or partial to complete burn-out of our insulin producing cells (not enough insulin any more). This cycle of events leads to increased abdominal fat, sugar and/or carb cravings, hormonal changes (low testosterone and increased estrogen), inflammation, water retention, memory loss, brain shrinkage and more. An important point is that insulin resistance that is left unchecked can lead to pre-diabetes and may convert to Type 2 diabetes.

The main take-away is that insulin resistance is a big contributor to cancer, cardio-vascular disease, high blood pressure, cognitive impairment, kidney disease, Alzheimer’s, other dementia’s, brain fog, depression, anxiety, insomnia and fatigue: and because it creates a lot of inflammation, it can aggravate or perpetuate almost any disorder you can think of. Therefore, insulin resistance is considered a major player in creating disease and ill health.

Bottom Line: To find out if you have insulin resistance, you will need a blood test that includes fasting glucose, Hemoglobin A1c, and fasting insulin. You need all 3 tests, for without the fasting insulin you cannot fully tell what is going on.

What would be a sign or symptom of insulin resistance? The main one is if you get sleepy, tired or drowsy in 15 to 30 minutes after you eat. Also, weight gain around the middle, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, poly-cystic ovarian syndrome and more.

What can you do? Exercise, adequate sleep, consume a whole-foods food plan that is low in foods that turn to sugar rapidly and require insulin, reduce stress (yoga is a great one for that!), avoid smoking, maintain a normal weight (keep the belly fat low!!) are a few things that will keep insulin resistance at bay. There are several supplements that can help, including B-complex; Minerals to include magnesium, vanadium, chromium and zinc; alpha lipoic acid; the herbs Berberine, Banaba Leaf, and Gymnema. Often there are blood sugar formulas that have most of these in one product, like the one we have called Gluco-Function.

The main thing is food: avoid processed food, added sugars, high-fructose corn syrup, soft drinks, artificial sweeteners (yes, those fake sweets are also implicated), white potatoes, fried anything, refined grains and keep your fruit intake modest. Also, consuming more protein than is needed will also contribute to blood sugar issues, so a good estimate of your protein needs is about 1/3 of your body weight. For example, if you weigh 180 lbs., then about 60 grams of protein per day is adequate and more is not better unless you are a hard-core athlete (you know who you are!!).

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