How is insulin resistance treated?

Updated: Jul 08, 2020
  • Author: Samuel T Olatunbosun, MD, FACP, FACE; Chief Editor: George T Griffing, MD  more...
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Evaluate patients for comorbid conditions; this is generally feasible on an outpatient basis. Admission for laboratory studies and treatment of acute complications may be warranted for patients whose conditions require urgent or emergent intervention. The metabolic syndrome requires aggressive control of cardiovascular and metabolic risk factors. Tailor therapy for optimal benefits.

Weight reduction improves insulin sensitivity in cases of obesity and in most of the obesity-related insulin-resistant states. Restriction of caloric intake is indicated. Dietary indiscretion, such as consumption of a diet high in cholesterol and sodium, should be avoided. Alcohol use should be limited. Smoking cessation is indicated. [64, 65]

Patiends should avoid physical inactivity. [66] Exercise improves insulin sensitivity via the following [67, 68] :

  • Increased oxidative enzymes

  • Increased GLUT-4

  • Increased capillarity

  • Reduced central adiposity

In patients with insulin resistance, diligent monitoring of metabolic profile, general status, medications, and side effects is indicated. Transfer may be indicated for diagnostic evaluation and for the treatment of major primary conditions and complications.

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