• Joshua Li

Improve Your Insulin Sensitivity - Your 7 Key Moves!


First off, we need to clear the air about what insulin actually is and why insulin sensitivity plays such an important role when it comes to building muscle and losing fat. Insulin is just a hormone that becomes active after you eat food. It binds with your body’s cells with the intent to store the ingested glucose in muscle as glycogen, or as fat. Generally, a “healthy” body will replenish glycogen stores first and only store the leftover glucose as fat. But when you have insulin resistance, your body’s cells don’t bind to insulin that easily. Instead, it is forced to create more insulin which in turn increases body fat storage.

Sub-par insulin sensitivity is also associated with the following negative consequences:

  • Slows down your body’s recovery time (muscle soreness lasts for longer)

  • Lowers sleep quality

  • Decreases overall athletic performance

  • Increases triglycerides (hence increases risk of heart disease)

  • Is a precursor for diabetes

  • Nerve issues

  • Sleep apnea

  • Gut issues

  • Eye/foot problems

So what can you do about it?

1. Focus on resistance training/anaerobic activities

  • Building lean muscle tissue, increases your body’s overall maintenance calorie level

  • 10% increase in muscle mass = 11% decrease in insulin resistance

2. Still do endurance exercises

  • Not as beneficial as anaerobic exercise as only trained muscles experience the benefits of lowered insulin resistance

3. Make sure your carb intake matches your body type

  • Sedentary/Overweight (LOW CARB: ~50g/day)

  • Leaner/Active (~100-200g/day)

  • Beginners (MODERATE CARB on training days and LOW CARB on rest days)

4. Eat foods that improve insulin sensitivity with carbs

  • Green tea

  • Nuts

  • Vinegar

  • Spices

5. Choose whole foods over refined foods

  • Whole foods elevate blood sugar much more gradually and so allow the body to regulate insulin release more efficiently

(Photo - Nutrition Kitchen HK)

6. Magnesium!

  • “the mineral of insulin sensitivity”

  • Eg. Leafy greens/nuts/seeds/broccoli

7. Avoid liquid fructose

  • Such as sodas/fruit juices/Gatorade/agave syrup

  • Lower fructose fruits include berries, nectarines, and grapefruit

Is insulin sensitivity halting your results? Come in for a free consultation and learn more about what it takes to achieve your own result. Book HERE


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