As you are aware we feel it is very important to educate our patients as much as possible on why they are doing things instead of being told to do something without getting an explanation. We have to understand that our chemistry at a cellular level changes with certain conditions such as insulin resistance. These changes can create vicious cycles and patterns in our chemistry that are hard to break. We will try to explain these very complex vicious cycles in layperson’s terms so you may understand them
So what is insulin resistance?
Insulin resistance is a condition in which the body produces insulin but does not utilize it properly. Insulin, a hormone made by the pancreas, helps the body use glucose for energy. Glucose is a form of sugar that is the body's main source of energy.
The body's digestive system breaks all foods down into sugar (glucose), which then travels in the bloodstream to cells throughout the body. Glucose in the blood is called blood glucose, also known as blood sugar. As the blood glucose level rises after a meal, the pancreas releases insulin. Insulin is a hormone. Hormones are chemical messengers. They are made in one part of the body and travel to another area of the body (i.e. our cells). They send a message into the cell to tell it what to do. In order for insulin to get a message into the cell, it must first lock into a receptor site. This is like a key and lock mechanism and it must fit perfectly into the receptor in order to get the full message or signal in to the cell. When this occurs, the message (signal) tells the cell to open up the gates to allow the sugar (glucose) into the cells.
With insulin resistance it is like someone putting gum in the lock. The key fits but it is not quite right. At a cellular level, with insulin resistance, the signal (message) is diminished and not as many gates open up to allow sugar into the cell to make energy. Inflammation in the body is a contributing factor for insulin resistance.
When people are insulin resistance, their muscle, fat, and liver cells do not respond properly to insulin. As a result, their bodies need more insulin to help glucose enter cells. The pancreas tries to keep up with this increased demand for insulin by producing more. Eventually, the pancreas fails to keep up with the body's need for insulin. Since the gates are not opening up, excess glucose builds up in the bloodstream because it can not enter the cells. Many people with insulin resistance have high levels of both glucose and insulin circulating in their blood at the same time.
Understanding insulin resistance is the first step toward making specific lifestyle choices that may help alleviate these issues.
We know that when people develop Insulin resistance they get insulin surges. This means that the insulin in your body is released in large amounts in a short period of time. This sets off a whole series or cascade of events at the cellular level. These events will eventually cause a shift in you and your immune system response. Many times people may develop food intolerances or food allergies. Whatever foods they are eating most are the ones to which they are going to be intolerant or sensitive. Usually the foods you crave the most are the ones to which you have a strong response. When you eat these foods, they create an adrenal response. This in turn creates an adrenaline rush and you crave those foods just like an adrenaline rush. This is just like when a runner or weight lifter get an adrenaline rush when they workout or run. They can’t wait for the next workout or run because they want that adrenaline rush again. So people who crave a food due so because that food causes the adrenal surges. That’s why once we balance out your system you will see a dramatic decrease or no cravings for those sensitive foods. This is one of the reasons why some people cannot put certain foods down once they start eating them or they continually go back to them even if they know it is wrong. Then they fell guilty causing more emotional stressors which also affect the adrenal glands. Some people say that diabetics just don’t have any self- discipline. Well I am here to tell you, it is more than that. So do not beat yourself up over it. It will get better as you remove the CAUSE and your body gets more balanced toward health and away from the disease process.
So what does all this have to do with the Lemon-Limeaid Fast? Since insulin resistance causes insulin surges and ultimately will cause a shift in the immune response, the immune system becomes overzealous and then leads to food intolerances which cause inflammation. The immune system will start recognizing these foods as being foreign in the body and it will produce what is a called an antigen. The antigen’s job is to “tag” things in the body that the immune system recognizes or perceives as being foreign. Once the foreign objects are “tagged,” the immune system will send out cells to destroy the foreign object. When you keep eating foods to which you do not know that you are sensitive, this creates more antigens whose purpose is to keep tagging these so- called foreign invaders. The increase in antigens is called the antigenic load. So what we are trying to accomplish with this short modified fast is to take foods out of your diet so that the immune system does not have to work harder to produce these antigens. This will decrease the antigenic load on the immune system and allow these vicious cycle patterns to be interrupted and help reduce inflammation in the process. Remember inflammation plays a role in insulin resistance. This is a very important step and a thorough approach is needed to try to calm the vicious cycles and/or patterns (the neuro –endocrine immune axis) down. Thus, the Lemon/Limeaid fast is a vital step in putting you back on the road to health.
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