Before The Beginning

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It might seem odd that I'm speaking of before the beginning of something, but what I'm referring to here is before the beginning of hyperglycemia, high blood sugar in other words, and there's lots that we know goes on behind the scenes before higher than normal blood sugar even hits, before diabetes and before pre diabetes as well.

Within the normal range, below pre diabetic levels, there is a range here where people can become pre pre diabetics if you will, but for the purposes of this article anyway I'm referring to the period where blood sugar is normal and if you just looked at blood sugar there'd be no need to be concerned.

It is estimated that the period that things start going awry with the mechanisms behind proper glucose metabolism consists of a period of years, and often even decades, as in more than one.  This is the big reason why type 2 diabetics most often hit the diabetic range later in life.  We are seeing people get type 2 diabetes earlier and earlier now though, but it's still generally a disease of middle age, mostly because it takes a long time to manifest.

However the factors that precipitate type 2 diabetes seem to be increasing, and we're not sure of all the factors involved here although we do know that we're talking about a great many things, not just obesity or high carb consumption, although those 2 are no doubt important factors.

People get type 2 diabetes though without being obese or even overweight, or eating a high carb diet, there are thin type 2 diabetics that have never eaten a lot of refined carbs, which is held to be a big factor, yet they still get it, so we know it's not just a matter of being overweight or having high insulin levels that cause this, although they definitely increase the risk.

So whatever goes on prior to diabetes, it does go on for a long time, and the body is pretty tough when it comes to maintaining glucose homeostasis, keeping our blood sugar within a normal range at all times in other words, and it takes a lot to break it down to the point where it even starts to fail, let alone fails to the point where our blood sugar gets high enough that we become diagnosed with diabetes.

One of the things we do see during this period is higher amounts of insulin being secreted, and less insulin sensitivity.  The two go hand in hand actually, as more insulin resistance requires higher amounts of insulin to be secreted, and higher amounts of insulin secreted results in more insulin resistance.

This process tends to play itself out rather slowly though, at least historically, although as I mentioned there are many other factors and an escalation of at least some of these other factors may cause the disease to progress more quickly.  For instance, and this is just but one example, the rise in goitrogens such as fluoride and bromide, as well as the use of soy and BPA, among other things, which reduce thyroid function, and therefore tend to reduce glucose uptake, can mess up glucose metabolism pretty significantly.

We do know quite a bit about the role high insulin plays in this though, and people's insulin levels rise to abnormal levels years before they get even pre diabetes.  It is also well known that high insulin levels significantly influence the progression of diabetes, but notice I'm not saying cause here, as there's more to it than just this but that's a very strong risk factor at the very least.

So measuring insulin levels is just one thing we can measure when it comes to looking at diagnosing glucose regulatory problems in the stages before hyperglycemia, but when was the last time you had your insulin levels tested?  They generally don't bother testing this even if you have diabetes and even if you are on insulin therapy, conventional medicine doesn't care about insulin really.

So next time I'll talk about some of the things that contribute to this road to diabetes, and there's lots to talk about here.

Next: Insulin Rising

Previous: Did We Do This To Ourselves?

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