Impact of Resistance Training on Insulin Resistance
Diabetes is becoming more and more prevalent in the U.S. adult population costing upwards in the near 200-300 billion dollar range. It is easy to understand that diabetes is a serious health concern that needs attention.
Diabetes is defined as a disease in which there is an abnormally high blood glucose level in an individual. Diabetes occurs when the body loses or is limited in the ability to produce and effectively use insulin.
When we eat, our blood sugar levels rise and it is the job of insulin to allow the glucose to uptake into bodily tissues such as muscle, the liver and adipose. The insulin is released from the pancreas and works be binding to the specific tissues above. Insulin resistance occurs when there is an issue with the ability of the insulin to bind to the tissues and facilitate the uptake of the blood glucose. Insulin resistance is the precursor to Type 2 Diabetes.
Continuous research has demonstrated that there is a positive association between resistance training and insulin resistance. Studies have shown that individuals who perform resistance training twice a week decrease insulin resistance. Resistance training promotes an increase in muscle tissue (also increases metabolic rate), the uptake of glucose into the tissue as well as decreases the pancreatic insulin release response with a glucose load (eating).
These studies demonstrate that those individuals who have insulin resistance, both diabetic and pre-diabetic, can experience tremendous gains with resistance training. It only takes 2 resistance training sessions to create a positive impact on insulin resistance. It is also important to remember that we can work to control insulin responses in the body by watching what we eat. The glycemic index exists to demonstrate the load that a particular meal (carbohydrates) will place on the blood sugar in our bodies. Carbohydrates in foods that are digested quickly (simple carbs) will have a higher glycemic load than those that are complex and require more time to digest (complex carbs).