Sugar Level Balance: Strategy to Reduce
Belly Fat and Brain Fog
by Dr. Ritamarie Loscalzo, MS. DC, CCN,
(The Best Years in Life)
Earlier, I posted articles about
managing your stress and a very special
type of exercise called Burst training.
Third on the list of strategies for
reducing belly fat and brain fog. is
reducing excess insulin production and
reversing insulin resistance. This is
Function and Dysfunction of Insulin
Insulin gets secreted in response to
elevation of your blood sugar. This can
be after a meal or as a result of
stress. The relationship between
cortisol and insulin is circular.
Increased cortisol raises blood sugar
which causes an increase in insulin
which causes cortisol to go up.
Under normal circumstances, after a
meal, the increased glucose and/or amino
acids in the blood cause the pancreas to
secrete insulin. The more glucose, the
more insulin that’s produced. Insulin
binds to the cell membranes and triggers
glucose receptors in cell membrane to
open up and let the glucose in. Glucose,
amino acids, fats, magnesium and other
nutrients are then transported into the
cell, the mitochondria produce energy
and everyone is happy. Once the
nutrients are cleared from the blood,
the pancreas stops secreting insulin.
Even under normal circumstances, insulin
has some undesirable effects. But like
most things in your body, it’s a double
edged sword. It has its good side and
its bad side. Insulin is absolutely
necessary to get the sugar out of your
blood and into the cells where it can be
converted to energy. Without insulin,
your blood sugar would skyrocket and
you’d become diabetic.
The negative effects of insulin are
Preferential use of glucose over fat as
Inhibits the burning of fat by the cells
Inhibits growth hormone
Slightly depresses thyroid effects by
blunting conversion of T-4 to T-3.
Insulin is chronically elevated when you
eat foods high in carbohydrates that
stimulate a rapid rise in glucose, and
when you eat your meals too close
together. When this happens, you are in
a constant state of inhibited fat
burning, low growth hormone and, lowered
metabolic. The end result is you can’t
lose the belly fat.
Excess insulin can cause your blood
sugar to get too low, leading to the
brain fog, irritability and ravenous
appetite caused by low blood sugar.
On top of everything else, after a while
the insulin receptors on your cells get
tired of the constant insulin
stimulation and they basically put their
hands over their ears and say: Enough!
When your cells become resistant to insulin, one of three things happens.
Insulin can’t keep up with the demand and your blood sugar starts to rise, leading to diabetes
Insulin gets really good at clearing the blood sugar triggering fat storage and your midsection grows steadily.
Insulin gets too good at clearing the glucose. Not only does your fat storage increase, your blood sugar plummets and you experience the symptoms of reactive hypoglycemia.
The problem happens when you eat a lot of foods that trigger insulin to be released or when you’re chronically stressed and cortisol causes your blood sugar to elevate. Then what happens is either the circulating insulin does not bind to the insulin receptors on the cell, or it binds, but its effects are deficient, and the nutrients are not efficiently cleared from blood. This causes your pancreas to continue to secrete more insulin causing high levels of insulin for a long period of time before nutrients are cleared. As a result you experience deficient function in insulin resistant cells, like your liver, fat, and untrained muscle due to insufficient energy production. It also results in the anabolic effects of excess insulin, namely increased body fat, especially around the middle.
Not all cells become insulin resistant. The cells lining your blood vessels don’t become resistant to excess insulin and thus suffer the adverse effects of excess insulin, namely oxidative damage to blood vessel linings. This can result in thickening, narrowing and plaque formation resulting in atherosclerosis, high blood pressure and increased risk of heart attack.
Excess insulin can also result in the adverse systemic effects of inflammation, water retention, suppressed fat burning, blunted growth hormone and low thyroid hormone.
SO…what should you do?
First and foremost, get off ALL sugar and processed foods. That means no bread, even gluten free, no cookies, crackers (except raw dehydrated ones, made from vegetables, nuts and seeds) no cakes, pastries, candies and fruit juice. These foods trigger blood sugar spikes which trigger excess insulin release.
You also need to restore your cell’s receptivity to insulin. There are a number of nutrients like chromium, magnesium, glutamine and zinc that are important here.
I’ve had great results with a 30 day program for restoring insulin receptor sensitivity. I call it my IRS restoration system, short for Insulin Receptor Sensitivity Restoration System.
Insulin Receptor Sensitivity Restoration System
Remove all foods that trigger blood sugar spikes: sugar, all grains, potatoes, fruit juice, dried fruit and high glycemic fruits like bananas and grapes. I recommend my patients purchase a glucose meter and test the fruits to determine which ones they need to eliminate. I also recommend that whenever fruit is consumed it’s taken with green leafy vegetables like lettuce, spinach and sprouts. Smoothies are the best way to eat fruit.
Supplement with the nutrients needed to restore regulation. In general these may be chromium, magnesium, glutamine, zinc and the B vitamins. It can vary from person to person.
Supplement with DHA, an omega 3 fat that’s vital for insulin sensitivity. This can be in a plant form, from algae or from fish.Insulin resistance and blood sugar level imbalance are not minor inconveniences that can be ignored. The long term consequences are serious and life threatening.
Retrain your tongue and get your blood sugar and insulin under control so you can live a long and happy life with a flat belly, clear head and a renewal enjoyment of your life.
Love, Health, and Joy,
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Successful Long-term weight Maintenance:
A 2-year follow up. Obesity: 15 (5);
Ritamarie Loscalzo holds a Doctor of
Chiropractic Degree with Certification
in Acupuncture, and is a Diplomat of the
American Clinical Nutrition Board. She
is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist,
with a Master of Science in Human
Nutrition. She also holds a Master of
Science in Computer Science from New
York University. She is also certified
as a living foods chef, instructor,
coach and teacher.
Her articles have appeared in the
Journal of Nutritional Perspectives,
Natural Awakenings, Purely Delicious,
and many other national magazines as
well as countless online publications.
She is in great demand as a speaker at
conferences nationwide. She is the
founder of the International Association
of OnLine Holistic Nutrition
Professionals (AOLNP) and the author of
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