The hormone insulin, naturally produced by your pancreas, is a key part of what goes wrong with blood sugar in people with diabetes. When you know your level of insulin resistance, you can better understand your diabetes risk and take steps to protect your long-term health and wellness.
At Monrovia Internal Medicine & Primary Care in Duarte, California, Dr. Ulin Sargeant offers insulin resistance testing to help you learn more about this aspect of your health. Dr. Sargeant helps you understand the results of your test and guides you toward the right choices for your healthy future.
What is insulin?
Your pancreas, an organ in your abdomen, produces insulin. Your cells use insulin to help them access and break down the glucose in your bloodstream. Once your cells break down this blood sugar, you get the energy you need to power your essential life functions.
What is insulin resistance?
If your cells can no longer sense and properly utilize insulin, you’re experiencing insulin resistance, and your pancreas thinks you need increasing amounts of insulin to break down glucose and regulate blood sugar.
You may have abnormally high levels of insulin for some time, with your body’s insulin concentration increasing. This is known as prediabetes. If your insulin resistance continues to progress, you can develop Type 2 diabetes.
When you have diabetes, your blood sugar levels stay too high, causing potentially serious health complications including heart disease, kidney failure, vision loss, and circulation issues that could lead to amputation and limb loss.
Insulin resistance also causes your body to retain fat deposits that can lead to serious health issues such as fatty liver disease or hepatic steatosis.
Addressing insulin resistance
Your insulin resistance may occur due to an underlying condition like a thyroid disorder or polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). Talk to Dr. Sargeant about your health history so she can determine the causes for your insulin issues.
Insulin resistance typically is reversible. With the right treatment plan, Dr. Sargeant can help you address your insulin resistance, and you may even be able to avoid developing full-blown diabetes. In order to reverse insulin resistance, you need to:
- Exercise regularly, getting in at least 30 minutes of moderate activity at least five days each week
- Make healthy dietary choices, including adding more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and lean proteins
- Work on healthy weight loss
Medications like metformin can also help keep your blood sugar levels under control.
Testing for insulin resistance
Are you at risk for developing diabetes? Dr. Sargeant can help you learn more about your blood sugar, hemoglobin A1c, and insulin concentration levels. When you have the information you need, you can realistically assess your risk for diabetes and make changes as needed to protect your life-long health.
Schedule your appointment at Monrovia Internal Medicine & Primary care with our online booking tool, or visit our virtual office today.