Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Insulin Reduction. Reduce the Sugar to Reduce Your Weight

BODY FAT STORAGE: Belly/Lovelandles


  1. Abdominal obesity
  2. Depression
  3. Irregular menstruation and infertility
  4. Lowered sex drive
  5. Skin tags, acne, dark skin patches on armpits, groin, neck and elbows

Eating a lot of sugar or high glycemic foods raises insulin levels, which deposits energy from foods into fat your fat cells. 

Years ago, having tests done at my acupuncturist's office, I remember when he told me I was slightly insulin resistant. At the time, I did not know what that meant but I dove into some serious research to figure it out. Oh man, was I was disappointed, it meant I had Pre-diabetes.  This knowledge forced me to become very aware of insulin and it's impact on my emotions and body shape. I want nothing to do with insulin resistance, so I stay away from things that contribute to it. 

For me my physical symptoms of excessive insulin showed up as love-handles, a sweet tooth of MAJOR proportions, an extra 20 pounds of body weight, plus it effected my mood. There I was happy one minute then grumpy and chunky in the next. 

An explanation for insulin's purpose in the body: 

When your body notices that sugar is elevated, it is a sign that you've got more than you need; you're not burning it so it accumulates in your blood. Insulin will be released to take that sugar and store it. How does it store it? Glycogen. Your body stores very little glycogen at any one time. All the glycogen stored in your liver and muscle wouldn't last you through one active day. Once you fill up your glycogen stores that sugar is stored as fat. 
-from Mercola



- Nutrient deficient carbs (soda, fast food, fruit drinks, chips, etc)
- Processed foods
- Breads/grains/cereals (screw you Fruity Pebbles)
- Sugar & artificial sweeteners
- High glycemic foods 
- Excessive fructose (fruit+honey)
- Large meals
- Liver overload (too many toxins)
- Not eating enough fat & protein
- Not getting enough fiber
- Lack of exercise

Insulin is involved in the blood sugar roller coaster. It starts with a yummy dessert. You feel like a million bucks after and while eating it, then later, your blood sugar crashes and you crave more sugar and your mood plummets. So, where it starts with dessert , it ends with a sugar crash, weight gain and possibly sugar addiction.

This whole blood sugar mess speaks numbers to me since as a kid, I grew up eating sugar. My family ate dessert every night growing up. In fact, running out of ice cream in the house was a huge mistake in my Mom's grocery shopping. I remember how upset we got when we ran out of our crack, uh, I mean ice cream. Getting away from sugar has been incredibly difficult but so very life changing.

We all need to feel accountable for our choices rather than victimizing ourselves with talk of genetics and food cravings. But we do live in a modern world where good choices are sometimes the more difficult. It's not easy to go to the grocery store instead of a drive thru. Its easier to go home after work and veg out with the TV, instead of go to the gym. No one judges you when you watch TV, nothing makes you feel uncomfortable. 
The big take away from this is the easier way is NOT the more powerful way. The more powerful way tends to yield BIG results that give you warm fuzzies inside. Just like the vegetarian who turns down meat tends to feels an endorphin rush from declining the food. Powerful choices build your confidence, encourage you to be more powerful and will lead you to good things in life.
It's my opinion, the more you do make those powerful choices; the easier and more rewarding they become. I think the paths we chose continually propel us in that same direction. If you are eating well and working out, that becomes easy; if you're not taking care of yourself, that too can become easy. That's why it's important to keep making the right choices, the ones that will make you hold your head high, make your children and family proud and help you look and feel healthy.

6 Easy Steps to Lower Insulin:
1. Turn off the TV. TV and obesity are both evil. Together, TV + Obesity are deadly. Turn off the TV for a month and you will want to thank me with a thousand kisses. You will get so much done and feel ALIVE again! Plus you can turn off your cable and use that money for a gym membership. 

2. Say "eff you"  to sugar. Its not a real food, it's chemically made and it's hurting your body. Substitute coconut sugar, honey or real maple syrup instead. 

3. Movement. Get up and walk around, clean the house, jump up and down. Feel your body, let your blood flow.

4. Start taking fish oil. I drink mine but others take it in pill form. I prefer Cod Liver Oil because it's got vitamin D in it but either way- fish oil is a staple in our house

5. Take cinnamon pills and or sprinkle cinnamon on everything. It helps!

6. Eat protein with your high glycemic foods to slow the insulin roll

If you are ready for a huge dietary overhaul, I suggest moving toward eating paleo. Paleo is good for keeping you eating real foods and not feel like you are dieting. Plus, you get to keep your body in a low inflammation state which means you won't get sick much; if ever. 

What to do when you slip up and you ate ALL that dessert? It happens to all of us! Get away from the dessert if there is any left, and go for a power walk. Your body will have an easier time if you give the sugar somewhere to go. I wrote about how I used to do burpees after I ate poorly. Movement helps with the food guilt.

Making Your Meat Suit Habitable part 1  - Setting the Wheels in MotionMaking Your Meat Suit Habitable part 2 - Your Liver
Making Your Meat Suit Habitable part 3 - Body Fat Map
Making Your Meat Suit Habitable part 4 - Exercise
Making Your Meat Suit Habitable part 5 - Human Growth Hormone

Master Your Metabolism, Jillian Michaels (Book)