Are You Insulin Sensitive?

by | May 27, 2021 | Conditions, Health & Wellness

Chronic disease is on the rise in the US with 6 in 10 Americans having at least one chronic disease and 4 in 10 having two or more chronic diseases. Chronic diseases are the leading cause of Death & Disability in the United States.1

While there are many risk factors to chronic disease, metabolic health and insulin sensitivity are increasingly recognized as predictors of chronic disease risk. A systematic review of 58 publications reviewing titled “Hyperinsulinemic syndrome: the metabolic syndrome is broader than you think” found that the following diseases are linked to high insulin levels:2

  • Atherosclerosis
  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Central obesity (visceral fat)
  • Certain cancers
  • Diabetes (Type 2)
  • Dyslipidemia
  • Hypertension
  • NAFLD (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease)
  • PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome)
  • Renal Failure
  • Sleep Apnea

So how do you check your insulin sensitivity?


At Vida we utilize the Cardio IQ® Insulin Resistance Panel a simple blood test covered by most insurance companies. It factors in your Fasting Insulin and C-Peptide scores (neither of which is glucose) to assess how hard your body is working to keep your glucose levels where they are. Glucose is assessed by either a direct Fasting Glucose measurement of your A1c, a three months average of your glucose based upon red blood cells.

Insulin Resistance Panel

Another way to assess insulin sensitivity is HOMA-IR (Homeostatic Model Assessment of Insulin Resistance). Again, this measurement is assessing how much insulin your pancreas must provide to keep glucose levels where they are.

HOMAR-IR Calculation
HOMA-IR Test Info

Why should this matter to you? We have known for decades that insulin resistance (hyperinsulinemia) predicts elevated glucose / Type 2 Diabetes by as much as 15 years in apparently healthy individuals. 3 As insulin sensitivity declines, fasting insulin levels increase to maintain a homeostatic range of blood glucose. Testing glucose or A1c alone only tells us that currently you’re able to maintain that level of glucose, not if the body is able to maintain that level easily or with difficulty.

Blog Author: Carolina Cartier, Certified Nutritionist at Vida Integrated Health Kirkland. Carolina is accepting new Telemedicine and In person visits. In network with most major insurance.  



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1) https://www.cdc.gov/chronicdisease/resources/infographic/chronic-diseases.htm

2) Kelly, C. T., Mansoor, J., Dohm, G. L., Chapman, W. H. H., Pender, J. R., & Pories, W. J. (2014). Hyperinsulinemic syndrome: The metabolic syndrome is broader than you think. Surgery (United States), 156(2), 405–411. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.surg.2014.04.028

3) Zavaroni, I., Bonini, L., Gasparini, P., Barilli, A. L., Zuccarelli, A., Dall’Aglio, E., Delsignore, R., & Reaven, G. M. (1999). Hyperinsulinemia in a normal population as a predictor of non-insulin- dependent diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and coronary heart disease: The Barilla Factory revisited. Metabolism: Clinical and Experimental, 48(8), 989–994. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0026-0495(99)90195-6

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