Metabolic flexibility (MetF) enables us to quickly switch back and forth between bodily processes depending on the availability of nutrients. This ability allows us to store energy when food availability is high, and use that energy when food availability is low. Insulin is important in this process: its supply increases when carbohydrates are ingested, at which time it stimulates metabolic processes. Our daily cycle of fasting and eating is an example of metabolic flexibility, (ie, we fast while sleeping every night).
In contrast, metabolic inflexibility (MetIF) is caused by excessive consumption of calorie-dense food in conjunction with poor sleep, high stress, little-to-no exercise, an imbalanced circadian rhythm, and exposure to environmental toxicants. In obese and/or insulin resistant people, insulin does not work as effectively, and so stored glucose or fat cannot be easily burned off. Instead, these people are left to derive energy from frequent meals, which makes it even more difficult to maintain/lose weight and re-establish MetF.
We run comprehensive labs to test for inflammatory markers, insulin resistance, cardiac markers and pathogens that affect your cardiac function.
MetIF is associated with metabolic syndrome (MetS). Diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, etc. are associated diseases. Symptoms include weight gain, tiredness, and inflammation of the body. Exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals, poor sleep, amount of physical activity and the time of day it is performed, and time of day of eating can all affect insulin sensitivity and susceptibility to obesity and metabolic syndrome. Besides lifestyle changes, intermittent fasting is an effective way to reduce insulin resistance and lose weight.
Nedrow, B. (May 2021). Metabolic Flexibility- How to Reverse Metabolic Inflexibility to Heal Chronic Disease. Townsend Letter, (454). 40-4