T Nation

Fats and Insulin Resistance

Ok, so I know I have a problem with glucose intolerance and insulin resistance. I get my ass in gear and am doing the things I need to do to improve that then I see this:

“Monounsaturated fatty acids (like unsaturated fats) promote insulin resistance, whereas polyunsaturated fatty acids can increase insulin sensitivity”

Does anyone know anything about this? Am I doing more harm than good by eating things like nuts and olive oil?

I’d say you need your fats. Eat good foods and tackle the insulin resistance where you can.

Exercise, omega-3s (e.g. Flameout) and no processed carb sources would be a good start…

You need to control your insulin levels…this is fundamental. So get the starchy carbs out and limit them to post workout periods.
Omega 3 fats are good - particularly fish oils. Green tea also may help control blood sugar. Nuts shouldnt be a problem really…they contain plenty of fibre which will help.

Thanks guys. I’ve cut out starches and I’m eating a little fruit and lots of vegetables, lots of protein, healthy fats, some flax oil, lots of fish oil, nuts and olive oil. But now I’m concerned about monounsaturated fats.

“Monounsaturated fatty acids (like unsaturated fats) promote insulin resistance, whereas polyunsaturated fatty acids can increase insulin sensitivity”

[quote]Max wrote:
Thanks guys. I’ve cut out starches and I’m eating a little fruit and lots of vegetables, lots of protein, healthy fats, some flax oil, lots of fish oil, nuts and olive oil. But now I’m concerned about monounsaturated fats.

“Monounsaturated fatty acids (like unsaturated fats) promote insulin resistance, whereas polyunsaturated fatty acids can increase insulin sensitivity”
[/quote]

What exactly is your problem with insulin resistance? You started out the thread by saying you know you have a problem, but that doesn’t mean anything without knowing what the problem his, how significant it is, and what your doctors have advised you to do about it.

[quote]eengrms76 wrote:
What exactly is your problem with insulin resistance? You started out the thread by saying you know you have a problem, but that doesn’t mean anything without knowing what the problem is, how significant it is, and what your doctors have advised you to do about it.[/quote]

Yeah, meaning is your blood sugar high for instance? If so how high? How long has it been this way?

[quote]Tiribulus wrote:
eengrms76 wrote:
What exactly is your problem with insulin resistance? You started out the thread by saying you know you have a problem, but that doesn’t mean anything without knowing what the problem is, how significant it is, and what your doctors have advised you to do about it.

Yeah, meaning is your blood sugar high for instance? If so how high? How long has it been this way?[/quote]

Well I should have explained a little more. There are diabetics in my family. I don’t have the numbers with me but I took a glucose tolerance test to see where I was at and my doctor determined that I’m pre-diabetic. I’m getting leaner, I don’t have too much fat on my stomach anymore but still have the protruding “pregnant powerlifter belly” due to visceral fat but that’s getting better.

I was told to basically follow a diet like I described above. And I’ve cut back on caffeine and alcohol, which I should probably eliminate both completely. But I never heard of any insulin resistance problems from monounsaturated fats before so I’m trying to find out if this is true.

[quote]Max wrote:
Tiribulus wrote:
eengrms76 wrote:
What exactly is your problem with insulin resistance? You started out the thread by saying you know you have a problem, but that doesn’t mean anything without knowing what the problem is, how significant it is, and what your doctors have advised you to do about it.

Yeah, meaning is your blood sugar high for instance? If so how high? How long has it been this way?

Well I should have explained a little more. There are diabetics in my family. I don’t have the numbers with me but I took a glucose tolerance test to see where I was at and my doctor determined that I’m pre-diabetic. I’m getting leaner, I don’t have too much fat on my stomach anymore but still have the protruding “pregnant powerlifter belly” due to visceral fat but that’s getting better.

I was told to basically follow a diet like I described above. And I’ve cut back on caffeine and alcohol, which I should probably eliminate both completely. But I never heard of any insulin resistance problems from monounsaturated fats before so I’m trying to find out if this is true.

[/quote]

Well Tiribulus and I are both diabetic and, I don’t think he’ll mind me speaking for him, neither one of us have any issues with monounsatuarted fats and insulin resistance.

There should be no negative effect on insulin sensitivity from monounsaturated fat consumption. Where did you read otherwise?

I’d focus on controlling insulin and reducing saturated/hydrogenated fat intake (as others have mentioned).

[quote]eengrms76 wrote:
Well Tiribulus and I are both diabetic and, I don’t think he’ll mind me speaking for him, neither one of us have any issues with monounsatuarted fats and insulin resistance. [/quote]

I wholeheartedly agree as he quite rightly predicted. Also, I’m not necessarily trying to dispute what Dave is saying, but at least in my case I eat great heaping quantities of all kinds of fat, even saturated, 5 days a week and my glucose levels are normal.

I also eat low carb on these high fat days as well though too. I was running 4-5 times normal for at least several years that I know of before I woke up and did something about it.

Edit: by all kinds I definitely WASN’T including hydrogenated BTW.

bullshit mono fats promote insulin resistance!

Fat has NO AFFECT ON INSULIN NONE! ITs insulin via bloodsugar that causes insulin resistance

why do you think that monitoring your carbs helps? You get more sensiive to insulin ( it takes less to do the job).

I really don’t think saturated fats are a problem ONly if they are combined with high starches ie carbs.

what your mixing up is that omega can increase sensitivity, where as unsaturates have other beneficial properties. Like Linoleic acid, and ALA.
monosaturates are very anabolic just don’t mix them with pasta or potatoes.

[quote]Kill’Em All wrote:
bullshit mono fats promote insulin resistance!

Fat has NO AFFECT ON INSULIN NONE! ITs insulin via bloodsugar that causes insulin resistance

why do you think that monitoring your carbs helps? You get more sensiive to insulin ( it takes less to do the job).

I really don’t think saturated fats are a problem ONly if they are combined with high starches ie carbs.

what your mixing up is that omega can increase sensitivity, where as unsaturates have other beneficial properties. Like Linoleic acid, and ALA.
monosaturates are very anabolic just don’t mix them with pasta or potatoes.[/quote]

Correct.
Fat has no effect on insulin.
Trans fat,however,does.
Trans fats interfere with insulin receptors and therefore with insulin resistance. Unlike trans fats, the saturated fats do not.

Consuming too much Sugar isn’t the only thing that promotes diabetes.
I believe saturated fats, monounsaturated fats,along with polyunsaturated fats, are just fine,as long as you stay away from the hydrogenated oils.

The point is type-2 diabetes did not exist 100 years ago when our diets were rich in both saturated and unsaturated fats.

[quote]David Barr wrote:
There should be no negative effect on insulin sensitivity from monounsaturated fat consumption. Where did you read otherwise?

I’d focus on controlling insulin and reducing saturated/hydrogenated fat intake (as others have mentioned).[/quote]

Interesting Dave…I was always under the assumption that saturated fat didn’t affect insuline resistance. I understand that the mono’s would help, but I always thought that saturated fat was neutral.

Now I can’t find the source I was reading but on that page there was a link to the Wikipedia page for “insulin resistance” and it mentioned monounsaturated fat promoting it. But it just doesn’t make sense that monounsaturated fat would have that effect. I never know what to believe on the internet

That brings up another question. What about caffeine? So I’m reading that caffeine is not such a good idea for anyone but is ok in moderation for most people. eengrms76 and Tiribulus, since you are diabetic do you avoid caffeine? I’ve switched to decaf coffee but I like that little “pick me up” before a workout. And I also have some green tea. Is caffeine in moderation for diabetics, or pre-diabetics?

[quote]Cthulhu wrote:
<<< The point is type-2 diabetes did not exist 100 years ago when our diets were rich in both saturated and unsaturated fats.[/quote]

IF ONLY the western world could grasp this very simple, but oh so true concept. I’d only qualify by saying was “practically non existent”

Someone was asking me this morning if what I eat is so good why do I have to put so much effort into it? Nothing like a little non sequiturian logic to start your day huh?

I told her if she were living 150 years ago and eating at all she’d be eating healthy food because that’s all there was. Now you can lose weight just by trying to find “food” that doesn’t kill you nevermind is actually healthy.

Strange, I’ve never heard of monos increasing insulin resistance.

I have heard that fish oil (like Flameout) improves insulin sensitivity, though.

[quote]Max wrote:
Now I can’t find the source I was reading but on that page there was a link to the Wikipedia page for “insulin resistance” and it mentioned monounsaturated fat promoting it. But it just doesn’t make sense that monounsaturated fat would have that effect. I never know what to believe on the internet

That brings up another question. What about caffeine? So I’m reading that caffeine is not such a good idea for anyone but is ok in moderation for most people. eengrms76 and Tiribulus, since you are diabetic do you avoid caffeine? I’ve switched to decaf coffee but I like that little “pick me up” before a workout. And I also have some green tea. Is caffeine in moderation for diabetics, or pre-diabetics?
[/quote]

A couple things:

1> Wikipedia is a fabulous site, but I wouldn’t plan my nutritional future based on what I read there.

2> I avoid nothing, except processed, packaged, garbage food. I eat 4500 calories a day, drink coffee and green tea all the time and eat flat out mountainous quantities of high quality carbs on the weekends all with very tight glucose control. I don’t drink at all at the moment, but a bit of alcohol won’t hurt you. Sorry, but if you’re getting a buzz that’s already too much.

Things I DO avoid at all cost:

Anything made from any type of non whole grain flour and even then grains are minimal.

ANYTHING, ANYTHING that contains high fructose corn syrup which instantly excludes about literally 90% of every single damn thing in the grocery store. I defy you to walk up and down the aisles of any grocery store and find 2 different items in a row that do not contain high fructose corn syrup. Beef jerky to catchup brother, it’s an industry standard.

Anything that contains hydrogenated oils even if the trans fat rating is zero. They pare down the serving size to amounts that would starve a dwarf and call it zero.

Fruit juice. While generally healthy it’s too easy to drink several hundred calories of liquid fructose in seconds. This is for 100% juice. Most of it contains, you guessed it, high fructose corn syrup anyway which would expunge it from my list right off the bat.

If by “pre diabetic” they mean mainly your glucose is a little high you have no problems chief.

Like I say mine was pushing on comatose territory (literally) and all I did was eat right and workout and it took care of itself. I’m not saying not to be wise and ignore it, I’m just putting your mind at rest. Type 2 is about the most manageable thing in the world if you take care of yourself.

I’m sure eengrms76 will have some additional stuff I forgot. He’s been dealing with it longer than I have too.

[quote]T-Nick wrote:

Interesting Dave…I was always under the assumption that saturated fat didn’t affect insuline resistance. I understand that the mono’s would help, but I always thought that saturated fat was neutral.[/quote]

Yeah, it was just a general health suggestion, although I had just seen this acute study (demonstrating an effect): Xiao et al., Diabetologia. 2006 Jun;49(6):1371-9

There is a recent (?) cross-sectional study showing an interaction but I’m not completely sold on the idea.

[quote]Tiribulus wrote:
I’m sure eengrms76 will have some additional stuff I forgot. He’s been dealing with it longer than I have too.[/quote]

Nah. I think you’re full of shit. I love HFCS! I take baths in it… :slight_smile:

Good list by the way- I would only add a note about low GI carbs. FOr a diabetic- it’s not enough. For real control you need to look at the GL scale as well.

I personally only ingest carbs that are either fruit/veggies, or something that contains 100% whole grain. Not just whole wheat, it needs to be 100% whole grain and have nothing “enriched” in the ingredient list.

[quote]David Barr wrote:
T-Nick wrote:

Interesting Dave…I was always under the assumption that saturated fat didn’t affect insuline resistance. I understand that the mono’s would help, but I always thought that saturated fat was neutral.

Yeah, it was just a general health suggestion, although I had just seen this acute study (demonstrating an effect): Xiao et al., Diabetologia. 2006 Jun;49(6):1371-9

There is a recent (?) cross-sectional study showing an interaction but I’m not completely sold on the idea.[/quote]

Another point worth mentioning too is that I didn’t start eating large amounts of saturated fat until my glucose levels were already under control.

[quote]eengrms76 wrote:
Nah. I think you’re full of shit. I love HFCS! I take baths in it… :slight_smile:

Good list by the way- I would only add a note about low GI carbs. FOr a diabetic- it’s not enough. For real control you need to look at the GL scale as well.

I personally only ingest carbs that are either fruit/veggies, or something that contains 100% whole grain. Not just whole wheat, it needs to be 100% whole grain and have nothing “enriched” in the ingredient list.[/quote]

Yup yup, load is important. Bottom line is if you just stick to unrefined, wholesome sources you’ll be alright if you keep the variety up and space out your intake.

Enriched is marketing deceptionese for refined flour with some iron and maybe a couple other things added back. Total shit in other words.

I don’t know if years of dedicated and well funded research could produce a carb source that’s worse than HFCS and the frickin shit is in EVERYTHING.