Do you have problems gaining weight? Have higher blood sugar than you are supposed to give your diet? At risk for type 2 diabetes?
If yes, then this post applies to you.
What is Insulin?
There’s a very strong correlation between being overweight and insulin levels because insulin creates fat cells.
But some people in the modern environment naturally have lower insulin levels, even if they don’t take care to reduce carbohydrate consumption.
These people with low insulin complain to me that they can’t gain weight.
Having inadequate insulin secretion is also a cause of type 2 diabetes (together with insulin resistance).
So while you might weigh less, you’ll have higher blood sugar levels and be at a higher risk for type 2 diabetes.
Insulin forces artery wall muscles to relax, thereby increasing blood flow, especially in micro-arteries. A lack of insulin reduces flow. In the thin people I deal with, they often feel cold. One of the many reasons is because of low insulin, which reduces blood flow.
This post is to give you biological reasons that may contribute to lower insulin secretion.
I’ve checked my insulin levels twice and both times they were lower than 2, which is extremely low. The thin clients that checked also had low insulin.
1) Lower Carb and Protein Consumption
The most obvious cause of low or high insulin is your carbohydrate consumption and secondarily your protein consumption. Both stimulate insulin release.
But this post focuses on people with lower insulin if they’re not on a very low carb or ketogenic diet.
This post is mainly concerned about two people with the same levels of carb and protein consumption: why do their insulin levels differ?
2) Low ATP From Poorly Functioning Mitochondria
But if your mitochondria aren’t producing enough ATP, insulin doesn’t get secreted as well.
3) Low cyclic AMP
cAMP is a molecule that is an important second messenger for cellular communication.
The chief role of cyclic AMP in several tissues seems to be to facilitate or promote the mobilization of glucose and fatty acid reserves.
Cyclic AMP has so many roles in the body, one of which is increasing gut flow (R), which people often have a problem with.
Cyclic AMP also promotes the release of insulin from pancreatic beta cells (R).
4) Low cyclic GMP
Like cAMP, cGMP is an important second messenger for cellular communication.
cGMP helps blood vessels, lungs, insulin secretion, and gut flow (R).
cGMP also helps insulin secretion (R)
Not getting enough sun will cause lower nitric oxide, which will lead to lower insulin release. People with low insulin don’t get enough full body sun.
5) Oxidative Stress
Free radicals cause pancreatic beta cells to malfunction and decrease insulin release (R).
Diseases like type 2 diabetes are caused by oxidative stress.
6) Circadian Dysrhythmia
People with low insulin almost always have circadian rhythm problems. Both problems are caused by lower BMAL1.
In mice, a deficiency of BMAL1 leads to increased ROS levels in several tissues (R), which is an issue my clients deal with.
7) Lower Vagus Nerve Stimulation
Vagus stimulation has anti-anxiety and anti-depressant effects. People with anxiety very often have lower vagus activation and higher HRV.
Celiac vagus removal decreased insulin secretion and food intake. The celiac branch takes signals from the brain and relays it to the pancreas (R).
An overactive nervous system is the cause of a lot of health issues that I see people have. See some of the negative effects of stress.
Also, they cause a short-lived increase in blood pressure, but a long term decrease in blood pressure. They also cause decreased gut flow, sedation, and thicker blood (platelet aggregation) (R).
These are all symptoms that are more common in people I see who have lower insulin.
9) Low Oxygen/Hypoxia
I’ve spoken about how low oxygen is a common problem in people.
Hypoxia reduces blood insulin (R).
When you’re hypoxic, this will cause you to have lower ATP, lower cAMP, and loss of cellular calcium oscillations, which are necessary for CRH to stimulate insulin and insulin production in general (R).
People with bad blood flow, indicated by cold hands and feet, will suffer from lower oxygen in certain tissue – such as the pancreas.
10) 5HT2C Receptor Activation
When given an antagonist of the 5HT2C receptor, people with CFS reported less perceived fatigue (R), which might implicate this receptor in fatigue as well.
Activation of this receptor is involved in the problems people deal with who also have lower insulin.
The receptor is increased by inflammation (R), and inflammation can also cause fatigue by shutting down orexin.
11) Lower Vitamin D Receptor Activation
12) Lower Liver X Receptors (LXRs)
People I deal with often have lower detox ability, likely in part mediated by lower liver X receptors.
The liver X receptors (LXRs)-α and -β play a crucial role in control of insulin production and secretion. People with certain polymorphisms in LXR genes show reduced insulin secretion (R).
Osteocalcin is a protein released by bone cells to create new bone.
Osteocalcin acts as a hormone in the body, causing beta cells in the pancreas to release more insulin, and at the same time directing fat cells to release the hormone adiponectin, which increases sensitivity to insulin (R).
Osteocalcin synthesis is dependent on vitamin K (R).
A lot of the people I see that have lower insulin also have lower testosterone and bone density. Osteocalcin is a link with these three issues.
14) High Hydrogen Sulfide
You want to have this compound balanced. It has a host of benefits. It increases glutathione (R), learning (LTP), libido, protects the heart and the gut while lowering inflammation (in most tissues) (R), homocysteine, diabetes, asthma, etc. (R).
The cluster of symptoms that I see (low insulin, low blood pressure, and IBS-C ) make hydrogen sulfide a contributing factor for some.
15) Lower Vasopressin
My clients usually have low vasopressin, which causes problems retaining water (R).
16) Lower VIP
VIP is an anti-inflammatory peptide and people with chronic inflammatory health issues often have lower VIP.
VIP stimulates insulin and glucagon secretion (R).
17) Higher Cortisol
People I see tend to have higher cortisol.
18) Lower SIRT4
Lower Sirtuins and sirtuin activity is a common problem in people with fatigue and chronic health issues.
Glutamate Dehydrogenase (GDH) is important in insulin-producing pancreatic β cells. Beta cells secrete insulin in response to an increase in the ATP: ADP ratio, and, as amino acids are broken down by GDH into α-ketoglutarate, this ratio rises and more insulin is secreted. SIRT4 is necessary to regulate the metabolism of amino acids as a method of controlling insulin secretion (R).
GDH is activated by ADP and BCAA’s like leucine (R).
GDH is decreased by excess Glutamate, which is a common problem in people with chronic fatigue (R).
The reason these are in the other category is that they don’t fit the constellation of other symptoms I see in people with low insulin. But they still affect insulin secretion.
20) Secretin inhibits insulin release (R). So higher secretin would be a cause of lower insulin.
21) RXR has a suppressive effect on insulin secretion (R).
The people I deal with generally have too much CRH, but they also have low oxygen delivery to tissues and low vasopressin. Some people with depression can have lower CRH.
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