Insulin Resistance Syndrome and Alzheimer’s Disease

by Dr. Stephen Sinatra
Filed Under: Blood Sugar, Mood & Memory
Last Reviewed 02/24/2014

Insulin Resistance Syndrome and Alzheimer’s Disease

Insulin resistance syndrome is an all-too-common medical condition whereby insulin fails to metabolize glucose effectively. This, in turn, leads to higher blood sugar, which signals the body to produce more insulin. When this happens, glucose cannot be effectively metabolized and turns to fat instead.

But how do you know if you're insulin-resistant? A telltale insulin resistance symptom is fat around the abdomen that makes you look like an apple. That's right! That big "tire" around your middle probably means high triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol, high blood sugar, and possibly even high blood pressure.

A newer definition of insulin resistance syndrome includes excess protein in the urine. Doctors call this microalbuminuria, which is a known marker for early microscopic renal (kidney) damage and a serious predictor of diabetic renal disease. And to make matters worse, insulin resistance doesn't stop with heart disease ... it also contributes to Alzheimer's disease.

A study in The Journal of Neurology reported that Alzheimer's patients had lower insulin levels in their cerebral spinal fluid, which nourishes your brain and spinal cord. Although further research is needed to determine whether ideal glucose metabolism will actually prevent Alzheimer's disease, the fact remains that insulin resistance syndrome is higher in patients with Alzheimer's disease.

How to Avoid Insulin Resistance Symptoms

Follow my PAMM diet and avoid carbohydrates, particularly processed carbohydrates or carbohydrates, that can cause your blood sugar to soar. Some of the worst offenders include the following:

  • Beer (maltose)
  • Bread
  • Rice
  • Bagels
  • Crackers
  • Pasta
  • Potatoes
  • Corn
  • Processed cereals

Higher-carb fruits that you should eat in moderation include raisins, bananas and watermelon. And remember, refined sugar, molasses, honey, maple syrup and commercial fruit juices (especially concentrates) have a high glycemic index, resulting in higher blood sugar.

If you must have some of these foods, make sure your portions are small and combine them with low-sugar foods like nuts, beans, plain yogurt, skim milk, soy products, flax, salads and other green leafy vegetables.

By reducing your daily intake of sugar, you'll not only lower your cholesterol and triglycerides, you'll lose weight, have more energy and prevent the major degenerative diseases afflicting 20th-century man, including diabetes, heart disease and possibly even Alzheimer's.

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