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Joined: January 16, 2006 United States

How is Inflammation Related to Insulin Resistance?

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Chronic inflammation is on the forefront of medical investigation, with researchers trying to understand not only what causes the condition but also how it can be prevented.

Inflammation is the response of vascular tissues to harmful stimuli. In the case of Insulin Resistance, Metabolic Syndrome (Syndrome X) , Pre-Diabetes and PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome), this harmful stimuli is insulin.

Prolonged levels of elevated insulin contribute to inflammation. If left unchecked, this type of inflammation can lead to atherosclerosis and contribute to Insulin Resistance - the imbalance of blood glucose and insulin. PCOS has been characterized as a low-grade inflammatory state, which can be assessed by measuring CRP (C-Reactive Protein).

CRP is a blood test that helps determine the level of inflammation in blood vessels. The higher the CRP reading, the higher the inflammation is and the greater risk for cardiovascular disease. Additionally, women with PCOS have higher levels of CRP than women without PCOS, whether they are lean or overweight.

Elevated levels of CRP are also linked strongly with Metabolic Syndrome, a cluster of increased risk factors for cardiovascular disease which can lead to a heart attack or stroke.

The way to reduce inflammation and lower the risk of cardiovascular disease is to restrict one's exposure to insulin through a diet high in lean proteins, good fats and good carbs from vegetables, plus some fruits. Additionally, there are numerous nutraceutical ingredients that moderate inflammation, such as omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants and minerals. Don't forget that exercise produces a positive and long-lasting impact on the body's inflammatory processes.

Dr. Shackelton is a founding partner of Insulite Laboratories. She directs research and development of the formulas comprising the four Insulite Systems and those in development. Her study of the biochemical and physiological reasons for weight gain led to her focus on Insulin Resistance – the abnormal response of insulin to glucose - and its growing number of related conditions. []

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