Many people don’t realize there is a close connection between insulin resistance and hormone health.
You may have heard of the term “insulin resistance” before when talking about Type 2 Diabetes. Many people don’t realize there is a close connection between insulin resistance and hormone health, particularly in women. An increasing number of women are being diagnosed each year with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) – a cluster of symptoms that can present as irregular and painful menstrual cycles, increased body hair, mood swings, and infertility. Often, women diagnosed with PCOS are also found to be insulin resistant.
Insulin is a vital hormone used to regulate blood sugar, or glucose, in the body. In short, insulin works to direct blood sugar into our body’s cells to be used for energy and signals to the liver to store blood sugar for later use. We literally couldn’t survive without it!
Insulin resistance is something that happens over time when there is too much blood sugar in your bloodstream, and your pancreas is working extremely hard to pump out enough insulin to process the blood sugar. Eventually, your pancreas can no longer keep up, and your body does not respond to the insulin being produced, so your blood sugar continues to rise- causing inflammation and leading to conditions like Type 2 diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.
Signs of insulin resistance include sugar cravings, fatigue, sleeplessness, difficulty losing weight, and skin tags/ dark patches on the skin.
HOW DO I PREVENT THIS?
Though these are all complicated processes in the body, medicine is beginning to see how diet, lifestyle, and epigenetic factors play a role in chronic diseases such as PCOS. An imbalanced diet high in processed foods and sugars will, over time, create inflammation in the body, and stress the pancreas, leading to insulin resistance, and often developing PCOS in young women. With this holistic understanding, we can start to empower ourselves to make changes in our lifestyle that can alleviate symptoms and even reverse these conditions.
One simple step you can take if you think you may be dealing with insulin resistance or have been diagnosed with PCOS, is ensuring your diet contains adequate protein. Protein contains essential amino acids that our cells need to repair and produce new cells.
Adequate protein intake (about 46 grams a day for the average woman) is essential for rebuilding and repairing when it comes to insulin resistance and PCOS. Protein intake will work to satiate carb and sugar cravings, maintain a healthy metabolism, and works to improve our blood sugar balance.
When looking for a protein powder, quality is vital! Our Daily Protein is a great quality, plant-based protein. With 4 plant sources, it provides all of the necessary amino acids for healthy cells, with 21 grams of protein per serving! It is 100% organic, vegan, gluten-free, soy free, and non-GMO! One scoop a day is a great way to begin making steps towards healthier blood sugar and hormones!