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Were our Genes Wired to be Fat?

Polly Lysen-Halpern

Insulin:  It’s not just about diabetes


If you look back at the history of our ancestors, they didn't have a weight problem.  We humans lived as hunter-gathers for most of our time on this earth.  Only in the last 10,000 years, have we lived in an agriculture society and only in the most recent times, have we had so much food availability.   To survive for most of our time on this planet, our bodies needed to store fat so our genes evolved to store fat in times of plenty and to use that fat when there was scarcity of food.

Our genes are just doing exactly what they have been wired to do.   If our genes didn't store fat, we wouldn't be here.

The problem now is that we have more food available to us then ever before.  We don't need to store as much as we once did but our genes are still wired to store.  So our environment has changed a lot but our genes are still functioning as they have done for most of human history.

So on one hand fat storage is good because without it we wouldn’t be here.  But the challenge; how do we lose fat storage or maintain it once, we lose weight in our current environment?  The answer involves a very important hormone.  Insulin.  One of the key hormones involved in storing fat is Insulin. 

Insulin is associated with often with diabetes but it’s essential to everyone, not diabetics.  As a hormone, insulin is a major player in the body’s metabolism.  Its primary role is to help glucose or sugar get into your cells to supply them energy.  Its other main role is to facilitate the storage of fat.   Learning how to manipulate this insulin is vital to improving your metabolism and weight loss.  Insulin is like a hormonal “switch” that signals our bodies to store excess energy as body fat in times of food availability to access to the stored energy on our body in times when less food is available.


In a nut shell: your weight is regulated by hormones.  Insulin is a fat-storing hormone, so learning to lower your insulin levels is critical to losing weight.  ​ Understanding how insulin works is key to controlling your metabolism and losing weight.

The old thinking of "eat less and move more" does not work for the long term.  Many people are able to lose weight under this paradigm, but they often gain the weight back, and then some. Calorie restriction only leads to a lower basal metabolic rate (BMR) which is why it's not a permanent solution.

However, if we learn to manipulate the hormones that drive weight gain, diabetes and other metabolic issues, we can regain control.

Metabolic syndrome  (which includes, being overweight, high blood sugars, high blood pressure, and cholesterol)  even diabetes are hormonally driven and reversible.  We  can no longer accept that diabetes is a progressive disease that one is doomed to “manage”  for the rest of his or her life but rather it is reversible.   


Contact us if you want to get started on your journey.  I look forward to working together!

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