How Insulin Resistance Stymies Weight Loss

(4-minute read)

I often remind my Bettys that you can’t manage what you don’t measure.

It’s imperative to know if your diet, fitness routine, sleep schedule and other lifestyle factors are working for you–or against you.

There’s a lot of conflicting advice being offered and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to stay motivated when you don’t know what “right” means for you. So, if you’re not sure what works for you and your body, I’d like to share a new tool that will help you find out.

Why Measure Insulin?

A key driver of overall health is insulin, a vital hormone in regulating blood sugar and metabolism. Insulin is not commonly tested, but it should be: avoiding chronically elevated insulin levels is crucial for preventing insulin resistance.

High insulin levels prevent stored energy—particularly fat—from being accessed and used. When losing weight, you want to access your stored energy reserves. Chronically high insulin levels make this much harder to do.

When fat accumulates, inflammation rises. This leads to further insulin resistance,

Insulin resistance negatively impacts your ability to lose weight and puts you at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

Left unchecked, it can eventually contribute to other health issues like fatty liver disease, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), high cholesterol, high blood pressure (hypertension), cardiovascular disease, stroke, cancer, and even Alzheimer’s.

Fortunately, diet and lifestyle changes like exercise, stress management, and blood sugar tracking can all help reduce insulin resistance, manage metabolic response, and promote weight loss.

My Experience with Metabolic Metrics

When I started as a Levels member a few months ago, I thought I understood my metabolic health pretty well.

Turns out, I didn’t actually know how certain foods were affecting me until I viewed my own unique response metrics on the Levels app.

The biggest change I’ve made is cutting back on avocados because I found that my metabolism doesn’t actually respond well to them.

Even if you enjoy a food, and even if it’s considered on the healthy spectrum, you and your metabolism may not agree.

Poor glucose control affects your day-to-day energy levels, your ability to control your weight, and even sexual function.

Tracking your glucose can help you make more informed food choices based on your own unique physiology.

This is where Levels comes in — it gives you data-backed, personalized, real-time information about how your food choices affect the aspects of health that matter to you —including your weight, sleep quality, and risk of chronic disease. How?

Based on your unique lifestyle and biology, the Levels app–paired with a wearable continuous glucose monitor–delivers recommendations tailored specifically for you.

A New Approach to Weight Management

Beyond insulin, several hormones play a role in weight management. Your body’s response to a given food may vary depending on your hormonal makeup at a given moment. This factor is particularly relevant to women because they experience natural fluctuations in hormone levels throughout their menstrual cycle and their lifetime (e.g., during perimenopause and menopause).

Most diets don’t consider differences in physiology and lifestyle that affect how your individual body responds to different foods.

When you only focus on the scale and the mirror, you can overlook key changes happening in your cells and organs.

Levels recognizes these nuances. The app helps you track what’s happening inside your body by helping you identify how your body responds to different foods in real time.

With this personalized, immediate information, you can identify which foods spike your blood glucose and then make incremental changes to your meal plan to keep your levels in a more stable range.

Seeing how your food choices and lifestyle habits affect your body through the different phases of your menstrual cycle can help you decide on foods better suited to your body’s fluctuating hormones and needs.

And measuring your metabolic response helps you manage more than your food.

You may be inspired to cultivate small habits (like taking a walk after lunch to curb that afternoon slump!) that will help keep your blood sugar at stable levels consistently.

Food choices based on your own physiology, coupled with daily movement, adequate sleep, and minimizing your stress are the best ways to lose weight sustainably and keep yourself healthy in the long term.

Get Started with Levels

Right now, Levels is offering my Bettys an additional two free months of the Levels Annual Membership when you get started using this link.

Dr. Stephanie

Hey There!

I’m Dr. Stephanie

I’m part geek, part magic and it’s my mission to be a voice for women who just aren’t getting the answers they need about their health - whether that’s from their friends, their family or their primary health providers.

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