Decreasing Insulin Resistance
Obesity, Type 2 Diabetes, and Alzheimer’s Disease all share a common cause: insulin resistance. Diets and bariatric surgeries usually fail because they do not address this underlying issue. Designs for Wellness helps you understand the causes of insulin resistance and provides you with treatments and lifestyle changes that will reduce it to help you lose weight and improve your health.
Ghrelin is a very important hormone that is produced in the stomach, and it’s what lets your brain know that you’re hungry. For patients with insulin resistance, an excess of Ghrelin can actually prevent another hormone called Leptin from entering the brain. Leptin is responsible for letting a person know that they are full, and when it’s too low, this can lead to frequent cravings that can overwhelm someone even if they have a lot of willpower. This is why our practice provides our weight loss patients with MetFormin, a medication that makes it easier for Leptin to reach the brain, which causes a patient to feel more full and less hungry. This helps a patient eat less as well as make better food choices because they don’t feel like they are starving all the time.
One of the biggest changes in the American diet over the past 50 years is the drastic increase in sugar found in most foods. You’ll find sugar not just in sweet foods, but savory ones as well, which helps improve overall flavor (this is particularly true for low or fat-free foods). Even the bread in your cabinet is packed with added sugar! Sugar is called many names on food labels, with fructose being one of the most common. When a diet is high in sugar/fructose, this blocks the production of Leptin, the hormone that lets you know you’re full. As a result, a person never really feels satisfied after they eat, so they eat more and pack on the pounds. This is why most overweight people constantly feel hungry despite consuming a high amount of calories.
As part of our program, we help our patients remove fructose from their diets so their level of Leptin comes up. A patient ends up feeling fuller after meals and naturally wants less food, which leads to weight loss.
Intermittent fasting is the practice of purposefully not eating for an extended amount of time between meals. There are numerous fasting programs used by people today. For some, a person only eats within an eight hour window during the day and fasts for the other 16. Other programs divide the eating and fasting into separate days. A person eats normally for five days and then fasts for two.
This type of fasting causes a huge “pulse” of human growth hormone to be produced by the pituitary gland. This can lead to a wide variety of health benefits, including increased energy, a reduction in insulin resistance, and weight loss. Every weight loss patient at Designs for Wellness is put on a fasting program, and to help someone get started, we provide small doses of medications like phentermine, bupropion, or Wellbutrin. These take away the pleasure effect of eating, making fasting much easier. Fasting, combined with the other parts of our program, will help a patient’s body start to primarily burn fat for energy as opposed to sugar, which leads to consistent and healthy weight loss.