When we consume food, it is broken down into simple forms of nutrients which are absorbed into the bloodstream. One of these nutrients is sugar, namely in the form of glucose. When blood sugar (glucose) goes up after food is consumed, the pancreas then releases a hormone called insulin. Insulin plays a key role in helping many of our body's cells take up the sugar and convert it into energy. Insulin is a vital part of energy metabolism and is necessary for life.
Another function of insulin is to signal the liver, muscle and fat cells to store the glucose you do not need at the moment so it can be used for energy later when there is not enough food or glucose available.
It is great that our bodies have this back up energy system, otherwise, we would not be able to go more than a couple of hours without eating.
Can you imagine how unproductive we would be if we had to eat every 2-3 hours without fail for survival? Nothing else would get done! All the time we were not eating would be spent in pursuit or preparation of the next meal. We wouldn’t even be able to make it through a night of sleep if this were the case! Thank God we are able to store energy.
The problem, however, is that in modern times where we have been conditioned to eat 5 and 6 times a day (3 meals + snacks), we rarely give our bodies the opportunity to use this stored energy. We just keep adding to it. We eat more than we need, often of foods that have a high glycemic index (meaning they spike blood sugar high and quick) and therefore high insulin response. Our insulin is continually getting stimulated causing our bodies to keep storing more and more energy which leads to excessive body fat.
Each person has an individual threshold of how much body fat they can hold, and once your storage tanks have become so full, the body will start to deposit fat (stored energy) in places it doesn’t belong as there is nowhere else for it to go! Fat gets deposited in organs like the liver and pancreas leading to dysfunction of these systems.
Additionally, this hyperinsulinemic (excessive insulin) state is also theorized to lead to insulin resistance where the body doesn’t respond to normal levels of insulin anymore and requires more and more to do the job.
Considering a diet that helps to control insulin spikes is key to helping to prevent not only excess body weight, but diseases associated with high insulin like type 2 diabetes, fatty liver and heart disease.
Do you want to learn more about such a diet? Consider becoming a member of the Forever Fit Tribe or Forever Fit Custom programs! I would love to help!
Forever Yours in Health,