7 Day Insulin Resistance Diet Plan

Insulin Resistance Diet – Overview

What is insulin resistance?

Insulin is a hormone produced by pancreas which is responsible for glucose absorption and maintenance of blood sugar balance. Insulin resistance makes it difficult for cells in the body to absorb glucose. Over time, the body needs more and more insulin to function properly – which leads to high insulin levels and high glucose levels, these 2 combined makes weight loss extremely difficult. However, some dietary measures can improve body health and control insulin resistance.

Insulin resistance almost always leads to type 2 diabetes, which itself is widely known to increase risk of cardiovascular, neurological diseases and significantly affect quality of life. Weight loss is first-line management for insulin resistance, although it’s a rather complex process that requires the support of specialists. It is simply not safe for people with serious health problems such as pre-diabetes or  type 2 diabetes to lose weight on their own.

A way to improve insulin sensitivity and prevent progression to diabetes is to reduce amount of insulin the body is producing, there are 2 main way you can do that:

  1. Reduce refined carbohydrates and increase lean proteins and fiber products– since carbohydrates are most powerful stimulus for insulin production, while proteins and fiber slow absorption of carbs.

  2. Intermittent fasting – according to researchers intermittent fasting can prevent and improve insulin resistance, it even demonstrated some promising results as a non-medical management of diabetes type 2. Intermittent fasting makes sense, the longer you go without foods the stronger will be need for nutrients and easier for cells to absorb. You can actually combine these meal plan with intermittent fasting, simply by leaving out snacks from daily plans and divide foods to have 2 meals a day only, that way you will have significant changes in insulin sensitivity.

After all, these are generalized recommendations, to have an individualized diagnosis and management plan before making any drastic changes to your diet  it is recommended to consult with experienced nutritionists or endocrinologist who will develop an individual comprehensive weight loss program. 

What should we eat for a week to increase insulin sensitivity?

Best diet to improve insulin sensitivity and prevent progression to type 2 diabetes involves consuming raw non-starchy vegetables, whole intact grains, fruits with low or medium Glycemic index, beans and legumes.

Vegetables and Fruits– are low in carbohydrates and calories and provide you with rich content of fiber which is important to slow-down sugar absorption hence improve blood sugar levels and activate digestion. Besides they are rich source of antioxidants which defend cells from free radical damage. Make sure to choose low GI fruits so you don’t have to worry about blood sugar spikes, those are apples, grapefruit, apricot, strawberry, blueberry, kiwi, plums, peaches.

Healthy meats – seafood, cottage cheese, greek yoghurt and legumes are a great source of lean-proteins – which are necessary for healthy weight loss and blood sugar stabilization. Proteins slow down absorption of carbohydrates and support healthy  lean muscle mass development, hence more insulin-sensitive tissue build-up.

Dairy – According to WHO the recommended daily requirement for calcium is about 500 milligrams, dairy products nourishes us with this essential mineral so by including a cup of unsweetened milk, low-fat greek yoghurt or cottage cheese in your daily meal plan you won’t have to worry about osteoporosis or teeth problems. Besides calcium content, cottage cheese and greek yoghurt are  also a great source of lean protein which keeps you full longer and provides you with building blocks for muscle.

Seafood – Fish are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids which are beneficial for heart health and what’s important for insulin resistance diet, fish contains no carbohydrates, hence prevents you from blood sugar and insulin spikes.

Nuts and seeds in limited amounts are great snack ideas, they can provide you with all the essential healthy fats. Furthermore there are studies showing evidence that nuts can benefit those with risk of diabetes. As Pubmed study stated ” Frequent nut consumption could play a role in reducing the risk of T2DM and CVD through improvement in glucose and lipid metabolism, weight maintenance and improved endothelial function. “

Ginger – Surprisingly, ginger is known to improve insulin sensitivity and help with blood sugar regulations, by increasing the body’s ability to absorb glucose. According to a Pubmed study  daily consumption of 3 one-gram capsules of ginger powder for 8 weeks was beneficial for patients with type 2 diabetes due to HbA1c (glycosylated hemoglobin) reduction and improvement of insulin resistance. It does so with a help of special ingredient which increases amount of GLUT4 receptors on surface of cell, GLUT4 itself is responsible for absorption of glucose from blood to cells. So sprinkling a pinch of ginger to your meals can demonstrate significant effects.

Cinnamon – you will see a lot of cinnamon in this meal plan, it’s all because of one special ingredient called MHCP (Methyl hydroxychalcone polymer) which mimics action of insulin and helps out glucose enter the cells. As this study from Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology states “cinnamon and components of cinnamon have been shown to have beneficial effects on essentially all of the factors associated with metabolic syndrome, including insulin sensitivity, glucose, lipids, antioxidants, inflammation, blood pressure, and body weight.” So it’s defiantly a component you should not be missing out on.

Avoid processed, refined foods with added sugars, salts and trans fats.

7 Day Insulin Resistance Diet Meal Plan

Day 1

Breakfast

Avocado salmon toast with ginger powder – 712 calories

Snack

12 cherries – 62 calories

50 grams of Roasted chickpeas – 210 calories

Lunch

10 grilled Mushrooms with cherry tomatoes, spinach, parsley and soy sauce – 102 calories

Dinner

Burrito with beef, beans, lettuce, salsa   – 580 calories

Snack

1 cup of popcorn – 44 calories

100 grams of Yoghurt with berries with no added sugars 1 teaspoon of cinnamon- 120 calories

Total calories of the day: 1830

Day 2

Breakfast

100 grams of Low-fat Greek yoghurt with 10  blueberries pinch of cinnamon – 73 calories

Snack

1 slice of pineapple – 56 calories

10 almonds – 77 calories

Lunch

Turkey sandwich – 324 calories

Dinner

8 medium sized Meatballs(226 grams) with tomato sauce, bell peppers, legumes – 712 calories

1 slice of white bread – 70 calories

1 cup of avocado salad – 110 calories

Snack

100 grams of Kale chips – 141 calories

100 grams of Low-fat, low-sugar yoghurt – 63 calories

Total calories of the day: 1626 calories

Day 3

Breakfast

3 Egg omelet with green onions, spinach – 323 calories

1 cup of Strawberry and kiwi smoothie with 1 teaspoon of cinnamon – 163 calories

Snack

2 slices of Watermelon – 158 calories

40 grams of hazelnut – 259 calories

Lunch

Tuna sandwich – 440 calories

Dinner

1 bowl of Chicken soup – 168 calories

1 slice of low-fat cheese- 113 calories

Snack

Avocado toast – 189 calories

2 slices of cantaloupe – 24 calories

5 cashews – 45 calories

Total calories of the day: 1591 calories

Day 4

Breakfast

1 cup of rolled Cereal with almond milk and 1 sliced peach with 1 teaspoon of cinnamon – 183 calories

Snack

50 grams of pumpkin seeds – 223 calories

10 Strawberries – 58 calories

Lunch

100 grams of Veggie salad – asparagus, carrot, cucumber, mashed avocado, spinach, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, onion, green bell pepper

121 calories

Dinner

4 Low carb cabbage rolls – 914 calories

1 slice of low-fat cheese gouda – 113 calories

Snack

Peanut butter with apple and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon

282 calories

Total calories of the day: 1894

Day 5

Breakfast

1 cup of Cottage cheese with granola, 10 strawberries, teaspoon of cinnamon- 253 calories

Snack

1 whole Grapefruit -103 calories

Boiled eggs with 4 florets broccoli, cauliflower – 174 calories

Lunch

Quinoa bowl with vegetables (250 grams) – 303 calories

Dinner

Seafood soup -380 calories

1 slice of white bread – 70 calories

1 slice of low-fat cheese- 113 calories

Snack

50 gram flaxseeds – 267 calories

Total calories of the day: 1663

Day 6

Breakfast

1 cup of Oatmeal with raspberry and banana- 313 calories

1 cup of kale smoothie – 123 calories

Snack

5 Ham and cheese roll-ups – 302 calories

1 cup of blueberry smoothie – 188 calories

Lunch

1 cup of Greek salad – 179 calories

2 falafels – 166 calories

Dinner

Chicken fillet with curry, asparagus, onion, olive oil – 413 calories

1 slice of white bread – 70 calories

Snack

10 pistachios – 40 calories

5 Apricots – 84 calories

Total calories of the day : 1878 calories 

Day 7

Breakfast

100 grams of Chia pudding with almond milk, ginger, sliced pear and pinch of cinnamon

153 calories

Snack

10 pecans – 100 calories

1 whole small orange – 47 calories

Lunch

100 grams of Hummus with 1 sliced cucumber and 1 carrot – 203 calories

1 low-carb muffin – 312 calories

10 almonds – 77 calories

Dinner

2 Shrimp tacos with low-fat cheese – 478 calories

100 grams of Zucchini chips – 87 calories

Snack

12 olives – 52 calories

10 small-sized plums – 121 calories

Total calories of the day : 1630

Fluids: You can drink fluids like water, tea, coffee in unlimited amounts, just make sure they are sugar-free, for aforementioned reasons, sprinkling cinnamon to your coffee or tea can help increase insulin sensitivity. Try to avoid juices, lemonades, alcohol – since they contain carbohydrates in great amounts and have relatively high glycemic index.

Let’s sum up our insulin resistance diet recommendations with a very crucial tip that is – exercise! Resistance training utilizes glucose stores for energy and makes all the new consumed carbs enter muscle cells to be stored as glycogen, besides that multiple studies demonstrate that even light-weight exercises affect insulin sensitivity positively.

References:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2343294/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2901047/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24559810/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33531076/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6101284/

See Also

Dash Diet for Diabetes Type 2

Foods that Burn Belly Fat

1200 Calorie Meal Plan

Low Cholesterol Meal Plan with Grocery List

21 Day Sugar Detox Meal Plan

500 Calorie Meal Plan

Cabbage Soup Diet Plan