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Insulin Resistance & Inositol : An idea of great importance

Insulin is a peptide hormone secreted by the β cells of the pancreatic islets of Langerhans and maintains normal blood glucose levels by facilitating cellular glucose uptake, regulating carbohydrate, lipid, and protein metabolism, and promoting cell division and growth through its mitogenic effects.

Insulin resistance is defined where a normal or elevated insulin level produces an attenuated biological response, classically this refers to impaired sensitivity to insulin mediated glucose disposal.

Compensatory hyperinsulinaemia occurs when pancreatic β cell secretion increases to maintain normal blood glucose levels in the setting of peripheral insulin resistance in muscle and adipose tissue.

Insulin resistance syndrome refers to the cluster of abnormalities and related physical outcomes that occur more commonly in insulin resistant individuals. Given tissue differences in insulin dependence and sensitivity, manifestations of the insulin resistance syndrome are likely to reflect the composite effects of excess insulin and variable resistance to its actions.

Type 2 diabetes is a leading determinant of morbidity and mortality globally, with enormous economic and societal consequences ( Between 1980 and 2020–2021, the number of adults with diabetes (90% of which is T2D) increased from 108 million to 537 million, with corresponding increases in obesity from 100 million to 764 million adults ( And India is one of the hot sports.

So, improving insulin resistance is like insurance cover for almost all type of metabolic reasons. Sensitiveness is time process –it develops over a time and keeps declining over the time.

Normally Meta Form is start and end of treatment –only the needs to increase dosages keep happening and eventually to INSULIN.

In this comes INOSITOL.

Inositol’s are 6-carbon polyols present in all living cells (Noventa et al. 2016). Humans synthesize approximately 4 g of inositol a day in the kidney (Clements 1979), but inositol’s are also abundant in fruits, grains and nuts but a study in US food on average they get only 1 gm. of it from food.

Inositol and inositol derivatives often act as both insulin mimics and second messengers Hansen 2015; Nielson and Rutter 2018 In humans, perturbations in inositol synthesis, metabolism and excretion are associated with metabolic conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), diabetes mellitus and metabolic syndrome as well as perinatal disorders including gestational diabetes (GDM) (Crawford et al. 2015).

Several small clinical trials suggest that inositol supplementation could be a useful intervention or preventive measure for the insulin-related and metabolic abnormalities in PCOS, GDM and type 2 diabetes (Noventa et al. 2016).

 Inositol supplementation appears to decrease glycemia and improve insulin sensitivity, but effects vary depending on the inositol isomer used, the dose and the population studied

Other small clinical trials have also suggested that inositol supplementation might reduce plasma triglycerides and total and LDL-cholesterol levels among patients with diabetes mellitus, hyperinsulinemia, metabolic syndrome and PCOS (Tabrizi et al. 2018), thereby highlighting a natural compound that could address the increased risk of atherosclerotic and cardiovascular diseases associated with these conditions.

Natural Sources of Inositol’s: Some Examples

In a recent work, Ratiu et al. analyzed 52 plant sources coming from 40 different species in search for cyclitols, thus finding 37 new sources of these compounds. In their study, medicinal plants and herbs were analyzed (Taraxacum officinaleLaurus nobilisSambucus nigraSalvia officinalisChamomilla recutitaHypericum perforatumMentha piperita), as well as spices (Curcuma longaTrigonella foenum-graecumZingiber officinaleCapsicuum annuum) and table vegetables (Daucus carotaLactuca sativaBrassica oleraceaSolanum tuberosum). As expected, all investigated plants contained myo-inositol in variable amounts; in particular, cinnamon, lettuce and blueberry fruits were found to contain quantities of this compound (1.21, 1.07 and 0.96 mg/g dry vegetable material, respectively). Allo-inositol, one of the four possible stereoisomers directly derived from myo-inositol, was found in 14 samples over 52 with the richest sources being blueberries (10.84 mg/g dry vegetable material). Other inositols reported in this study were the already mentioned ononitol (blueberries, wild garlic, garlic, kale, mint) bornesitol (goldenrod flowers) and scyllo-inositol, which was detected in 30 over 52 samples and whose highest content was found in carrot (0.81 mg/g dry vegetable material).

A similar study was carried out on 17 edible vegetables belonging to the families of Asteraceae (chicory, endive, escarole, artichoke, iceberg lettuce, oak leaf lettuce, lollo rosso lettuce, romaine lettuce, cresta lettuce, lactuca batavian lettuce), Amarantaceae (spinach and beet root), Amarylidaceae (onion), Brassicaceae (radish and cabbage), Dioscoreaceae (purple jam), and Solanaceae (eggplant) . d-Chiro-inositol was identified and quantified in all members of the Asteraceae family with quantities ranging from 3.1 to 32.6 mg/100 g dry product, whilst scyllo-inositol was detected in noteworthy amounts only in purple yam (28.3 mg/100 g dry product) and chicory leaves (5.3 mg/100 g dry product). The Fabaceae (or Leguminosae) family seems to be particularly rich in inositols: free inositols (myo- and chiro-) and methyl-inositols have been detected in edible legume seeds, together with galactosyl-inositols (galactinol isomers, galactopinitols, galactosyl-ononitol, fagopyritols). As example, Ruiz-Aceituno and co-workers analyzed some of the most common members of the Fabaceae family (black-eyed peas, buckwheat, carob pods, chickpeas, grass peas, lentils, and soy beans); their study revealed again myo-inositol in all the legume extracts analyzed, particularly in chickpeas in considerable amounts (1.22 mg/g sample). d-Chiro-inositol was found at much lower concentrations in almost all the matrices investigated, excluding black-eyed and grass peas.

Apart from carob pods, which are considered as the main natural source of d-pinitol with more than 100 mg/g sample, the authors found this metabolite also in soybeans, chickpeas, and lentils. Another methyl-inositol, identified as ononitol, was identified in black-eyed peas (2.03 mg/g sample).

And since it’s a huge spread of eatables one can always incorporate them or possibly a curry masala type can be made to be added in vegetable to add nutrition in food.


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