Everybody wants more energy and most of us want to shed unwanted fat. Today I want to share with you a metabolic condition, which–due to the Standard American Diet (SAD)–most Americans have to some degree. This condition is called: INSULIN RESISTANCE
It zaps us of energy, increases fat production (cholesterol, triglycerides, and LDL), alters our metabolism, can lead to type 2 diabetes and essentially changes our entire physiology…especially our brains!
What is metabolism? Simply put, it is this: We eat food and food gets converted to energy. That’s metabolism!
Once in the body our food gets broken down into mainly glucose. Glucose is the major energy source for all of our cells and is the ONLY energy source for our brains. Our brains consume about 30% of our entire glucose intake. It is by far the most metabolically active organ in our body. So if we have a problem with glucose metabolism, guess which organ feels it the most? That’s right…THE BRAIN!!!
Is it any wonder then, that brain-based conditions like DEPRESSION, ANXIETY, MEMORY LOSS, ALZHEIMER’S and so on are so much on the rise and so heavily marketed to by the big pharmaceutical companies? One just needs to watch TV at night to see all the dozens of commercials for anti-depressants and anxiety medications.
Okay; here’s how it works:
We eat our food and drink what we drink and hopefully we absorb it (yes, proper absorption is essential for good metabolism) and it gets broken down into glucose and sent into the bloodstream. Glucose in the blood is USELESS. Let me repeat that …glucose in the blood is USELESS! It must get into the cells where it’s converted to ATP, which is the ultimate energy source for our bodies. This conversion only takes place IN THE CELLS. Glucose outside of our cells (in the blood) is like gasoline NOT in the tank of our car or coal NOT in the steam engine.
As we eat and drink the levels of glucose in the blood will rise. There is a part of our brain that senses this and signals the pancreas to secrete the hormone INSULIN. WHY? Because insulin’s job is to push glucose into the cells where it can be converted to energy (ATP) and everybody is happy!
Now: here’s where things go wrong. THE AVERAGE AMERICAN HAS GLUCOSE LEVELS THAT ARE WAY TOO HIGH! (I’ll explain the reason later. There’s more to it than you think…)
Why is this a problem, you ask? (Now, pay attention—it is crucial for your health that you understand this part!)
CHRONICALLY HIGH LEVELS OF GLUCOSE = CHRONICALLY HIGH LEVELS OF INSULIN.
Chronically high levels of insulin are bad, bad, bad for your body and especially bad for your BRAIN. Why? Great question–here are the answers your doctor doesn’t have the time to explain to you!
High levels of insulin do the following:
1. Eventually your cells will stop listening to insulin! It’s like this…. Pretend that you work for me. Everyday you come into work I scream and yell at you and scream and yell (you can’t quit because you need the job). Eventually, what would you do? You would TUNE ME OUT or STOP LISTENING TO ME ALTOGETHER, right? Well, that’s what your body does to insulin (or any hormone, for that matter) when it is chronically high. It stops listening to it!
THIS IS INSULIN RESISTANCE!
So, what happens then? Well, Glucose continues to build up in the blood and it’s not getting into the cells. What happens to the energy levels of the cells? It DROPS. Your cells fatigue–especially brain cells! Why? Because they require a LOT of glucose, and when they don’t get enough, you get conditions such as brain fog, depression, anxiety, memory loss, lack of sleep—sound like anyone you know?
And…what is the medical approach to this problem? First, they are going to wait until your fasting blood glucose creeps up to about 126 or higher and then GIVE YOU MORE INSULIN or some other drug like metformin . Think about that…I mean really think about that. THAT’S LIKE ME SHOUTING AT YOU HARDER. It may work for awhile but then you get used to that and I have to shout EVEN LOUDER…I hope you get the point.
Listen to me… the day you go on insulin, get out a big red Sharpie and circle that day on the calendar–BECAUSE YOU WILL NEVER BE THE SAME!
Unless…unless…stay with me now….you get to the root cause of WHY your blood glucose is so high (to be explained later).
So now you have the extra glucose in the blood and your body has to do something with it…well, guess what it does? It makes that glucose into fat. Yep. It’s called lipogenesis.
Cholesterol, triglycerides, and LDLs start forming in the blood. Again, what is the ‘modern medicine’ answer to this? ANOTHER DRUG! Yep, usually a cholesterol–lowering drug known as a statin drug. You know it as Crestor or Lipitor etc. (just watch TV for the others). I’m not even going to tell you the side-effects of these drugs (well, if you get muscle cramps or your hands/feet are tingling/burning, I might…that’s a hint).
Watch for part 2 in next month’s edition of The Valley Patriot.
Dr. Jin Sung is a chiropractor and the owner of Functional Chiropractic, Inc. He manages chronic patients both neurologically and metabolically to achieve the best outcome. He can be reached at 978 688-6999. Or visit his website at www.DrJinSung.com