Insulin and Leptin are two hormones known to be linked to obesity and other metabolic disorders. Processed foods are typically loaded with sugars and other fillers that break down quickly, released into the bloodstream, and cause a spike in blood sugar. In this blog, we will go over how to combat blood sugar spikes and help your body perform at it's best.
Insulin is used by the body to help glucose move into cells to be used as energy. In the presence of a blood sugar spike, the pancreas has to go into overdrive to produce enough insulin to help move all the sugar out of the blood. If cells become too saturated or damaged, insulin resistance begins to occur, causing an abundance of insulin. In response, insulin then begins helping the body store the extra energy as fat.
Produced by fat cells, Leptin is a hormone that communicates with your brain whether or not you're hungry, if you have excess energy available, and what to do with energy if more fat is needed. If Leptin is working properly, your brain will understand you are full and not need to consume more food and store energy as fat. This will allow your body to call upon fat storage as energy, burning fat which is a much more sustainable source of energy.
Using only sugar (glucose) for energy results in short bursts of energy with more metabolic waste that ends up being stored as body fat. Overproduction of leptin can lead to insensitivity similar to that of insulin insensitivity. This leads to the "full" signaling to your brain happening less, causing over eating and acidic buildup leading to chronic inflammation.
The Good News
You can teach your body how to burn fat for energy, instead of burning sugar. First, eat a nutrient rich diet. Eat greens and other leafy vegetables as much as possible, consume moderate amounts of protein, and consume healthy sources of fat. Some sources of healthy fats include coconut oil, avocados, olives, seeds, and nuts.
Additionally, practice intermittent fasting and consume protein 30 minutes after exercise to increase or maintain muscle mass. Exercise has been shown to increase metabolism, boost hormone levels in the body, and convert white, cancer causing, fat into brown fat that is easier to burn for energy.