One of the underlying causes of PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) is Insulin Resistance, a condition that increases the chances of developing not only Diabetes but cardiovascular disease as well. So it is critical that you understand the interaction between Insulin Resistance and Diabetes in order to avoid developing more serious health complications.

The human body processes food into energy by first converting food into glucose, which is then passed into the cells by insulin, a hormone produced in the pancreas. Diabetes is a disorder of that metabolic prosess – a malfunction of the process that converts food to energy. Individuals with Diabetes either cannot use the insulin that is produced or the pancreas produces little or no insulin. When the pancreas struggles to keep up with the body’s need for more insulin, excessive levels of glucose and insulin can build up in the bloodstream, leading directly to Diabetes.

Physicaly Tired WomanPCOS (also known as Polycystic Ovarian Disease) has many of the same underlying symptoms as Metabolic Syndrome: excessive abdominal fat (although lean women can also have PCOS), high LDL (bad) blood cholesterol levels, low HDL (good) cholesterol levels, high levels of triglycerides, and high blood pressure – all components of the development of Diabetes. Metabolic Syndrome, which is also called Syndrome X, is a disorder that substantially increases your chances of developing cardiovascular disease.

When you are insulin resistant, your muscle, fat, and liver cells do not use insulin properly. Because of the over-production of insulin from the pancreas, many individuals with Insulin Resistance have high levels of both glucose and insulin circulating in their bloodstream at the same time.

It’s important to understand the distinction between Insulin Resistance and Diabetes. Insulin Resistance occurs when the body produces enough insulin, but the body’s cells lack enough insulin receptor sites to allow the absorption of insulin at a cellular level. Diabetes occurs when the body either doesn’t produce enough insulin or it can’t process the insulin that it does produce.

ChartAll of the factors associated with Insulin Resistance and PCOS are interrelated. Obesity and lack of exercise worsen Insulin Resistance, which then has a negative impact on lipid production, increasing VLDL (very low-density lipoprotein), LDL (low-density lipoprotein – the “bad” cholesterol) and triglyceride levels in the bloodstream and decreasing HDL (high-density lipoprotein – the “good” cholesterol).

Diabetes is widely recognized as one of the leading causes of death and disability in the United States. In 2000 it was the sixth leading cause of death and it has been associated with long-term complications affecting almost every part of the body, leading to blindness, heart and blood vessel disease, stroke, kidney failure, amputations, and nerve damage.

 

Obesity, especially abdominal obesity, is strongly related to PCOS. Obese women are particularly susceptible to Diabetes. Diabetes, in turn, puts women at dramatically increased risk of cardiovascular disease, as well as the development of other serious health conditions, including stroke, kidney damage, and blindness.

Many patients have been educated about the importance of checking their cholesterol levels, watching for signs of Diabetes, having their blood pressure monitored, and exercising – but there has been little to tie all of these factors together.

Studies have shown that a single solution will simply not work in trying to address the myriad symptoms of these conditions. Although no single pharmaceutical has yet been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) specifically for Insulin Resistance and PCOS, there are drugs approved for use in the treatment of Diabetes.

But a single pharmaceutical, or even a combination of them, will not eradicate or reverse PCOS and Insulin Resistance. Insulite Health recommends a combination of Nutritional Supplements that are condition specific, a realistic exercise program, nutritional guidance, a support system, and an easily accessible information source, all of which will help you change unhealthy lifestyle choices if you wish to return to optimum health.