This question is important to me and I plan on giving it a bounty after the necessary waiting time passes (48 hrs), please tell me what you think.
Have I found the ultimate Health Hack? When this question is through I hope to convince you that becoming insulin sensitive might be the most important thing that most people can do for themselves. I also hope to make the case for the most efficient way to increase insulin sensitivity.
First I'll make the case for how being Insulin Resistant can be BAD for your health:
- Hair loss and Insulin Resistance in Women.
- Insulin Resistance and Alzheimer: Reuters, Penn Med and Washington.
- Insulin Resistance and All Cause Mortality NCBI1 and NCBI2.
- Insulin Resistance and Acne.
- Insulin Resistance and Hard-gainers (Bodybuilding).
- Insulin Resistance has an inverse correlation with Serum Testosterone and Mitochondrial Function: Diabetes Journal, Doc Guide and NCBI. Tied to this is low testosterone predicts all cause mortality in women and men.
- Hair loss and Insulin Resistance in Men.
- Insulin Resistance and cancer: 1, 2, 3 and 4.
- Insulin Resistance and PCOS.
- Insulin Resistance and the Metabolic Syndrome Natural Choices inc, Pubmed.
- Insulin Resistance and Diabetes.
- Insulin Resistance and Obesity.
- Insulin Resistance and Depression / Mood Disorders: British Medical Journal, Diabetes Journal (ADA) and Women's Health.
- Insulin Resistance and living proximity to wealthy areas (This one is a bit of a reach for sure, but the fact that poorer people are more insulin resistant on a linear regression is quite interesting imo).
So if you want to keep your hair as a man or a woman, have sound cognitive function, lower your all cause mortality risk, get rid of acne, build muscle, increase mitochondrial function, increase sex hormones like testosterone, decrease risk of glandular cancers especially, not be obese, not be diabetic (type 2), not have metabolic syndrome, not have pcos, not be depressed or generally have ideal physical and mental health then becoming more insulin sensitive is probably a good idea.
Some things that might Cause Insulin Resistance:
Some things that might Improve Insulin Sensitivity:
- Vitamin A - NCBI
- Calcium, magnesium, chromium, vanadium and zinc - Well Cited Thorne pdf Article.
- HIIT - British Journal of Sports Medicine , The Journal of Psyiology , BioMed Journal.
- Resistance Training - Diabetes Journals (ADA) , NCBI 1, NCBI 2.
- Vitamin K2 - Diabetes Journal.
- Cold Showers / Ice baths - Tim Ferris, Jack Kruse and others.
I've shown that Insulin Resistance is correlated with Testosterone, Mitochondrial Function, Leptin and a host of other processes in the body. If the master hack is to become more insulin sensitive, then obviously these other processes which correlate with insulin sensitivity would be included also. So, my question to you then is:
Is Increasing Insulin Sensitivity THE Ultimate Hack?
I have 42 citations from over 10 recognized clinical journals. If you answer this question with a NO, I fully expect at least a descent rebuttal with appropriate citations. TY. I'd also like to note that this is assuming you're already getting adequate micro/macro nutrients in your diet.
The discussion on this hack has been going on for some time now and we have had a lot of valuable input. I recommend strongly for anyone interested in this idea to read through the whole thing. I'm copying one particular entry by Mike T because I'd HATE for anyone to walk away without reading this. After much discussion I've come to the conclusion that this is probably an essential puzzle piece of this hack.
You allude to this in your comment to August above, but perhaps the hack is actually to make your muscle cells insulin sensitive relative to your fat cells. I think increasing the insulin sensitivity of muscle and fat cells together, has much less benefit (if any) relative to increasing muscle cell insulin sensitivity while maintaining fat cell insulin sensitivity or even maintaining muscle cell insulin sensitivity while decreasing fat cell insulin sensitivity. -Mike T