Written By Kristin Wood
*This blog post may contain affiliate links to allow you to find the items mentioned. While I may earn minimal sums when you use these links, you're not incurring extra cost by using them, or in any way obligated to use the links. Thanks for your support!
If you’ve tried more diets than you can count and you’re once again looking for the next, you’re in the right place. I once was in your shoes, but I’ve learned a few things and left those shoes behind, along with some pounds and frustrations.
The person pushing the latest trendy diet plan or fat melting supplement wants you to believe it's the best and easiest way to lose weight. Popping a pill is always going to be the easiest action, but if it worked would you be here today looking for the next option.
It’s not that all the things haven’t worked, it’s just that nothing's given you results that stick. Your weight always cycles back up, regardless of how “good” you feel like your being.
Most fad diets fail because they end and you go back to old habits. You deserve to get off the diet train. To do that you need to know about insulin resistance. Not only know about it but know what actions you can take to reverse it. It is reversible and I have 4 game changing actions that you can start implementing today.
You might be walking around life without a care in the world when it comes to insulin. If you haven’t heard the words diabetic or pre-diabetic you might think your insulin is status quo. I’m here to tell you…
…there’s room for improvement.
My personal journey was full of years battling with diets, and having no lasting results. I wanted a change. I didn’t want to be 80 years old and still worried over what the next diet would be. Middle age brought its own challenges for me and through a prescription medication scare I realized my obsession of focusing on skinny had to change.
Despite years of effort I was not closer to my goals and my goals needed to change from “be skinny” to “BE HEALTHY”. Is that where you are?
It was a plot twist that led me to stumble upon insulin resistance. I had always preferred plans that focused on exercise over diet change. Honestly, I knew my diet was poor and I didn’t really want to give up my favorites. Little did I know that insulin resistance is a piece of the puzzle that sets our body set weight, which is the key to unlocking that stubborn barrier that keeps us from lasting change.
I needed to reset my body’s internal settings and it’s very likely that you do too.
You’re probably familiar with the concept of resistance. We hear about it around antibiotic resistance, viral resistance, or drug resistance. These are situations where our body builds up a tolerance and the only way to get the initial response, that we liked, is to increase the dose, which isn’t always practical.
It's not uncommon for western medicine to take the stance of increasing the dosage if something shows promise for a short time and then fades off. I’m not comfortable with that solution. It’s not working because it’s not the solution, it’s not addressing the root of the problem and I’m about getting to the root of the problem!
This resistance concept also applies to insulin and it’s a game changer in the world of weight loss.
There’s a whole population of women that are eating less but gaining weight. If that’s you, you’re going to want to read on for the 4 actions that can help insulin resistance.
Insulin resistance is causing weight gain because of a loop that is spiraling in your body. You see insulin has a purpose, it’s a protective shield that your body releases to convert and store glucose. Insulin is needed anytime sugary or starchy foods are taken in. With a high carb and heavily processed diet insulin has a lot of work to do.
The catch is that with higher insulin levels your body has a reduced ability to use the converted glucose. Meaning that your body needs higher and higher levels of insulin to do the job of storing more and more glucose. It starts a vicious cycle, the higher the resistance the higher the insulin, the new level of insulin creates an even higher level of resistance. The real kicker is that it becomes a problem that isn’t solely tied to your diet.
That’s why you feel like you're dieting and gaining weight! Without a reset even if you change your eating habits, your insulin levels will stay high, ultimately encouraging your weight to go higher.
In summary your diet may have started the cycle, but diet alone will not reverse the cycle.
Let's get to the good news, YES, you can on your own naturally improve insulin sensitivity. The key to lowering insulin levels involves retraining your body to use the stored glucose and new glucose effectively, again.
There are going to be some people that want data and want to test glucose levels to start learning how their body reacts to different foods. This can be done with a continuous glucose monitor or using test strips, if you’re ok with many finger pricks. However it’s enough to simply become more intune with the signals your body gives you. Telling you if your blood sugar is spiking or tanking.
This roller coaster ride with insulin looks like…
An immediate energy boost as sugar quickly enters the bloodstream and feels like a good source of fuel. Then within a couple hours you're left feeling like you put bad gas in your car's gas tank as you feel weak, shaky, and dizzy.
You may feel an increased alertness or improved concentration with an immediate spike in blood sugar. Then within a couple hours you need toothpicks to keep your eyelids open and no longer feel capable of stringing two coherent sentences together.
A spike can leave you thirsty. Water is a good thing, but when it seems like an abnormal amount is desired, question if it’s sugar or activity levels that are driving the dehydration.
At the top of the roller coaster you might experience an initial mood lift or temporary happiness due to the release of the feel-good neurotransmitter, dopamine. Then within a couple hours feel like the light switch flipped and you’re now overcome with irritability and anxiety.
The goal is to avoid glucose spikes, staying off the glucose roller coaster altogether. It’s time to share the magic actions that’ll help you do just that.
This isn’t an expensive or time consuming endeavor, and trust me, regardless of where you’re starting, you’ll be glad you decided to focus on this instead of continuing to accept weight gain.
These four actions are meant to be used together. The level that you start with each one will be based on your current level of health and wellness. If that’s not where you’d like to be, know that now you’re working on improving it. Be proud of taking proactive steps verse accepting a continual decline. Uplevel actions as you improve.
...is simple diet changes. Instead of focusing on counting calories or reducing portions, focus on food quality. When you’re reaching for something out of a bag, can, or box, review the ingredients. Sugar is hidden in most everything that’s processed and the ultra processed foods need to be a no-go for your diet.
Recently I was reviewing what was in the pantry at my home and noticed the loaf of bread I had contained high fructose corn syrup. Needless to say we’ve now had a brand change.
An easy tip to remember when reviewing the ingredients is if any form of sugar is in the first 5 ingredients, look for another option. Focusing on whole foods is your best insulin resistance diet plan. Think lower sugar choices similar to what you find in a keto plan, but also incorporating healthy fats like you would embrace in a mediterranean plan.
...is to incorporate fasting. This does not need to be complicated and it doesn’t have to be forever, it is just the best way to get your body retrained to use stored glucose. I always recommend starting by doing some random skipping of meals to see what time of day works best for your body to forgo a meal.
Once you find the time of day that works for you, start small by creating a 12 hour window without eating in a 24 hour period. The reason most people opt to skip eating first thing in the morning is because sleep counts in that 12 hour window. Gradually over time work up to a 16 hour fasting window.
In my Balanced Body Breakthrough program I have a secret weapon. Clients follow a 7 day fast program that can swiftly reverse insulin resistance. Those in the program have access to me each day for support and accountability so they’re not alone while tackling something they haven’t done before.
Pro Tip: Fasting doesn’t feel as challenging to stick with once your diet is cleaned up. Following a whole foods plan is a perfect way to see reduced cravings.
After years of trying all the standard diet actions I learned I was leaving one IMPORTANT action out of every plan I'd tried.
It was MINDSET!
And if you’ve been shorting yourself on sleep, permission to change is going to come from you. I've currated the FREE "Body Bliss Blueprint" Guide just for you. Your mindset holds the key to a blissful life.
👉🏻 Click here to get your copy.
is exercise. This doesn’t need to be a chore, it does need to be a step above your current level of exercise. To find what’s going to be right for you, think about what kind of movement you enjoy. This may mean brainstorming about the movements you enjoyed as a kid.
Resistance training, yoga, walking, or dancing are all examples of movement that allow you to start at one level of intensity and with consistency you’ll quickly be able to increase the intensity.
Activating your muscles is increasing your body’s need to use glucose. The goal is to slow down the requirement of insulin to produce and store glucose, while still generating a need in your body to use glucose. When this happens you’ll start using the glucose that’s been stored away. It’s like cleaning out the closet with no intent to fill it back up.
Pro Tip: The best exercise is the one that you’re willing to commit to daily!
...is managing your sleep and stress.
This may feel like a tall order but it’s a vital part of the journey. I’ve got your back with some practical tips in this post: 3 Ways Poor Sleep is Blocking Your Weight Loss.
The truth is knowing what to do isn’t enough to create change. Change comes from action! You may be wired to hold yourself accountable and implement all four of these actions on your own. I applaud you for that ability. However, you may be on the other side of that coin.
If you know that action and follow through is the part that stumps you I’m here to hold your hand in my signature system, Balanced Body Breakthrough. This 12- week program starts with a 45- minute Unlock Your Wellness Session prior to you purchasing the program. If in that session we decide a smaller package is more suitable for your needs I’ll offer suggestions that align with the result you desire.
If you’ve missed insulin resistance as a piece of the puzzle, what else might you be missing? Check out this post to learn more about the 5 pieces that your personalized plan must include for success.