Three meals per day, keeps the insulin resistance away

About the insulin resistance, I have been wrote in previous articles, but I will continue to write about because it is the main cause of obesity (and diabetes) [1].

Everything in our body is based on time. For example, obesity does not happen overnight, which is true for almost all the conditions and problems we are having. So the resistance to insulin (and the diabetes that follows) is slowly being developing and unfortunately when we realize it, it is somewhat late and we need to take drastic actions.

Frequent and elevated insulin levels are causing its resistance [2]. The foods we choose to consume, triggers our body to release insulin. However, we have to see how it is caused, and how our diet and the eating myths we often hear plays the main role in its development.

You see, insulin resistance is the main cause behind many diseases, but many times we are indifferent to our eating choices and how they contribute to its creation.

I mentioned in a previous article about calories and the myth surrounding them. For instance, many people say that a calorie is a calorie and what’s really matters in obesity and dieting is their daily consumption.

Based on this theory, we would say that the calories of broccoli or carrot are the same as the calories of Oreo cookies and pizzas. So, if you consume 2500 calories a day, you can eat 2000 calories from chips, biscuits and pizzas and chicken nuggets and lose pounds without giving up your favorite foods.

However, if you have been on a diet once, you should have noticed that this is not true, because just the law of calories has flaws. And if you have “caught” yourself saying that you get fat even with the smell of a pizza, then you have to think seriously about insulin resistance and not doing the newest fancy diet who promises a lot and does nothing.

Before going on with insulin resistance, let’s first look at what it means “resistance” in our body to understand and how insulin resistance is induced. As you may know, insulin is the key and cells the lock. When cells do not “obey” at insulin, they just need more “keys” to open them, and as a result the body excretes more insulin so the cells finally “open” and accept glucose.

However, there is a price we are called to pay. Normally, when the body secretes insulin, the cells obey and accept it immediately. This happens to those who do not suffer from insulin resistance and those who you see eating what they want without getting fat.

However, as insulin resistance is being developing, cells are no longer receive the same amount of glucose, so the body has to increase insulin to “push” these cells to accept the full amount of glucose they have to take.

So, what’s wrong, you may ask. If the cells accept insulin at the end, problem solved. This is not the case, however, because the increased amount of insulin causes obesity. The point is to figure out what happened and make cells (the locks) not obey insulin (the key). And the answer is one, the resistance.

Let’s first look at the antibiotic resistance [3], to understand how insulin resistance is also caused.

As you will know or have heard, the frequent use of antibiotics causes a kind of “resistance” from germs, causing viruses to develop some kind of defense in them. As a result, more and more antibiotics are needed to defeat a virus, but the price that one is called to pay is that in his next illness he will need even more. What happened? Just the frequent and large quantities have forced the viruses to develop resistance to them.

The same goes for coffee. If someone who does not drink coffee, drinks a cup of espresso, he will notice his side effects such as tingling, insomnia, etc. Over time and as the dosage increases, the body becomes resistant to coffee. So, after a few years, the same person will notice that he now needs a lot of cups of coffee to “recover”, and does not bother him at all in his sleep. What happened? Just the body developed resistance to coffee, the familiar “he get used to it” we say. In fact, he did not get “used” to coffee, just his body reduced the sensitivity of the cells to the coffee.

Something similar happens with the drugs. You may have heard, for example, that drug addicts are in the process of needing an increasing dose to get “high” because their body simply “shuts down” the cells that the drug stimulates, and thus requires a higher dose.

The same thing happens with insulin. As large and frequent are the quantities, the more the body will resist it [4]. As insulin resistance increases, the amount that is released increases. And the more insulin, the more resistance and so on.

That’s why it makes no sense to lower your calories, because the problem is elsewhere. When someone falls into the “trap” of insulin resistance, as time passes he will get fatter even more. And if you still cut your calories to half, hoping to reduce fat and insulin resistance, you just fell into another trap, cortisol.

Cortisol is increased when the calories you consume are reduced or when the amount of carbohydrate is also decreased [5], and in turn causes increased blood sugar [6] and insulin resistance [7]. What does this mean? More fat, hormonal problems and sleep problems [8].

Before go on, let’s first see two more eating myths, the one of the breakfast and the other with the many and frequent meals and snacks (2 to 3 snacks a day) to lose weight and increase your metabolism. Initially we should say that metabolism has nothing to do with the number of meals you eat.

We often hear that breakfast is the most important meal of the day and that we are at risk from many diseases, such as diabetes, if we do not eat breakfast [9]. However, many have connected breakfast with the consumption of cereals, which contain sugar and glucose syrup, which will cause problems for someone who already has insulin resistance, and many are the ones who recommend them. It should be noted here that cereal companies have also played a major role in promoting breakfast, which is also true for ready-made snacks (eg protein or cereal bars).

Let’s see what this means for our body. We eat our breakfast normally and as a result, our insulin rises. Insulin decreases after 2 hours. At 10, we eat a snack. The insulin rises again in our blood to drop after about 2 hours. Then we drink a coffee with sugar and/or milk, which increases insulin levels more than snacks, because coffee causes insulin resistance.

At noon we eat again and so the insulin rises again. In the afternoon we may eat a snack, which will once again increase insulin. Then we may go out for a coffee or juice and insulin will grow once more, which will continue for dinner.

Do you see what is happening? You have done what most nutritionists says, you had 3 meals and 2 snacks. However, these frequent fluctuations of insulin, as I mentioned above, will lead to its resistance with mathematical precision. And if in all of this, you add the so much reduced calories, the foods that contain little calories and fat and are promoted as healthy, but they having too vegetable oils and syrups, plus some kind of exercise that will further reduce your energy, then you have made a very nice fattening “bomb” in your body. And yet, you followed their advice to the letter.

Our body knows that frequent fluctuations of hormones cause resistance and do not constantly release them. For example, melatonin grows in the evening and decreases in the morning [10]. Cortisol starts to rise to the morning and peak when we wake up to drop a few hours later. Growth hormone increases greatly when we sleep deeply [11], while the rest of the hours are reduced.

Do you see the link? The body does not increase its hormones unless they need it, and it reduces them shortly, because otherwise there will be side effects, such as cortisol, where the modern way of life (and especially too much coffee) keeps it constantly increased, resulting in the exhaustion of the adrenal glands [12].

The solution? As I mentioned in a previous article, 3 meals a day, without snacks, no coffee in between and making the overnight fast last 18–19h [13]. Now let’s see what happens to our body.

You have breakfast with a coffee. Insulin will increase, but will decrease 2 hours later (approximately). At noon, 5-6 hours after insulin levels have decreased, you will have lunch. Your next meal, dinner, will be at least 6 hours after, meaning insulin will not grow for many hours. And with the fasting that you will do until the next meal (morning), you give your body enough time to reduce its resistance to insulin.

It is no accident that when we get sick we do not want to eat. It is the body’s reaction to begin the process of healing. When we do not eat for hours, the body begins the process of repairing it.

And if you do intermittent fasting, where you will not eat anything for 12-16 hours, you balance your body at the time that insulin will grow with the hours it will be reduced. And in conjunction with a proper diet, the cells will slowly begin to reduce their resistance to insulin and repair them.

The result? It will require less and less insulin to penetrate glucose into the cells and this will result in your body managing better glucose and losing weight.