To see the other articles in this series, click here. Over the past two decades, red meat has been increasingly blamed for everything from heart disease to cancer. In fact, an impartial review of the evidence indicates that red meat is one of the healthiest foods you can eat. But before we get into the health benefits of red meat, I want to take a moment to address the growing number of studies that tarnished its reputation in the first place.
To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. Studies dating back nearly a century noted a striking finding. If you take young, healthy people and split them up into two groups, half on a fat-rich diet, and the other half on a carb-rich diet, within just two days, this is what happens.
The glucose intolerance skyrockets in the fatty diet group. In response to the same sugar water challenge, the group that had been shoveling in fat ended up with twice the blood sugar. It would take scientists nearly seven decades to unravel this mystery, but it would end up holding the key to our current understanding of the cause of type 2 diabetes.
It circulates as blood glucose—blood sugar—and is taken up by our muscles, to be stored and burned for energy.
Blood sugar, though, is like a vampire. It needs an invitation to come into our cells. And, that invitation is insulin. So, insulin is the key that unlocks the door into our muscle cells. What if there was no insulin, though? Well, blood sugar would be stuck out in the bloodstream, banging on the door to our muscles, and not able to get inside.
And so, with nowhere to go, sugar levels would rise and rise. This is called insulin resistance. Our muscle cells become resistant to the effect of insulin.
Fat in the bloodstream can build up inside the muscle cells, create toxic fatty breakdown products and free radicals that can block the signaling pathway process. And, this can happen within just three hours.
One hit of fat can start causing insulin resistance, inhibiting glucose uptake after just minutes. Same thing happens to adolescents. You infuse fat into their bloodstream. Then, you can do the opposite experiment.
Clear the fat out of the blood, and you can clear the sugar out of the blood.
So, that explains this finding. Our bodies are insulin-resistant. But, as the amount of fat in our diet gets lower and lower, insulin works better and better.School Education, Volume 3 of the Charlotte Mason Series.
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Prediabetes and type 2 diabetes are caused by a drop in insulin sensitivity blamed on “intramyocellular lipid,” the buildup of fat inside our muscle cells.
Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may.