Why Does Fat Increase Blood Glucose?
Has this ever happened to you? — You eat a meal such as fettuccine alfredo with garlic bread and tiramisu for dessert. — You take either the appropriate amount of insulin for the carbohydrate in the meal or your oral medications. — You check 2 to 3 hours after eating and see a blood glucose reading that is in range. So far, so good, right? —Then you wake up the next morning with a very high number? Ever wondered what causes this? There are two reasons. First, Fettuccine Alfredo, garlic bread and tiramisu are, for the most part, a mixture of carbohydrate and fat. But it’s the fat in the meal that is contributing to the elevated readings. Although carbohydrate is the nutrient that has the most immediate affect on blood glucose levels, fat is not glucose neutral. But only a small portion of the triglyceride (fat) molecule, called the glycerol backbone, can be used as glucose. This very small addition to the glucose pool can’t be the source of your high blood glucose readings. So if fat doesn’t directly raise blood glucose, what is it doing? For many years scientists thought that fat was a metabolically inert substance. Fat on the body was considered dead weight, just extra blubber people carted around. Well it turns out that fat has been masquerading as the quiet shy guy in the back row, all the while packing a considerable metabolic punch. A high fat meal can increase the amount of free fatty acids (FFAs) in the blood. Both repeatedly elevated levels of FFAs as found in chronic intake of high fat (especially high saturated fat) meals and obesity are associated with both skeletal muscle and liver insulin resistance. That resistance means that it will take more insulin—either made by your pancreas or from an injection—to move the glucose in the blood strea Continue reading >>
Converting Carbohydrates To Triglycerides
Consumers are inundated with diet solutions on a daily basis. High protein, low fat, non-impact carbohydrates, and other marketing “adjectives” are abundant within food manufacturing advertising. Of all the food descriptors, the most common ones individuals look for are “fat free” or “low fat”. Food and snack companies have found the low fat food market to be financially lucrative. The tie between fat intake, weight gain, and health risks has been well documented. The dietary guidelines suggest to keep fat intake to no more than 30% of the total diet and to consume foods low in saturated and trans fatty acids. But, this does not mean that we can consume as much fat free food as we want: “Fat free does not mean calorie free.” In many cases the foods that are low in fat have a large amount of carbohydrates. Carbohydrate intake, like any nutrient, can lead to adverse affects when over consumed. Carbohydrates are a necessary macronutrient, vital for maintenance of the nervous system and energy for physical activity. However, if consumed in amounts greater than 55% to 65% of total caloric intake as recommended by the American Heart Association can cause an increase in health risks. According to the World Health Organization the Upper Limit for carbohydrates for average people is 60% of the total dietary intake. Carbohydrates are formed in plants where carbons are bonded with oxygen and hydrogen to form chains of varying complexity. The complexity of the chains ultimately determines the carbohydrate classification and how they will digest and be absorbed in the body. Mono-and disaccharides are classified as simple carbohydrates, whereas polysaccharides (starch and fiber) are classified as complex. All carbohydrates are broken down into monosaccharides before b Continue reading >>
Comparison Of Glucose And Fat As Energy Sources In Peripheral Parenteral Nutrition In Rats.
Comparison of glucose and fat as energy sources in peripheral parenteral nutrition in rats. Fukuta Y, et al. J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo). 1998. Infusion Research Department, Hoechst Marion Roussel Ltd., Shiga, Japan. J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo). 1998 Feb;44(1):47-55. Glucose is usually chosen as the energy source for total parenteral nutrition. However, the optimal glucose:fat ratio for peripheral parenteral nutrition has not been examined sufficiently. We compared glucose:fat ratios in hypocaloric nutrition. Male SD rats were given hypocaloric parenteral nutrition (approx. 190 kcal/kg/d) for 5 d after laparotomy. The hypocaloric solutions used contained 0, 33, 50, 67 or 100% of the non-protein energy in the form of fat. Body weight change, nitrogen balance, organ weights, and hepatic, splenic and plasma biochemistries were assessed. Body weight increase in the 67 and 100% fat groups was significantly greater than that in the 0% fat group. Nitrogen balance was the same in all groups. Hepatic glycogen content was significantly lower in the 100% fat group than that in the 0% fat group. The weight of epididymal fat deposits was significantly lower in the 0% fat group than in the 50 and 67% fat groups. On the other hand, tissue triglyceride content and plasma lipid levels in the 100% fat group were significantly higher than in the 0% fat group, and were also higher than in the control group. It is suggested that combinations of glucose and fat have sparing effects on body fat and hepatic glycogen. Combinations of glucose and fat as non-protein energy sources were superior to glucose or fat alone for hypocaloric parenteral nutrition. Continue reading >>
Does Carbohydrate Become Body Fat?
Dear Reader, Ah, poor carbohydrates, maligned by diets such as Atkins’ and the ketogenic diet. However, carbohydrates are your body’s main source of energy — in fact your muscles and brain cells prefer carbs more than other sources of energy (triglycerides and fat, for example). To answer your question: research completed over the last several decades suggests that if you are eating a diet that is appropriate for your levels of daily activity, little to no carbohydrate is converted to fat in your body. For most people (unless you have a metabolic disorder) when you eat carbs they are digested, broken down to glucose, and then transported to all the cells in your body. They are then metabolized and used to support cellular processes. If you’re active and eating appropriately for your activity level, most of the carbs you consume are more or less burned immediately. There are two caveats here: first, if you’re eating a lot more calories per day than you are burning, then yes, your liver will convert excess calories from carbohydrate into fats; second, not all carbs are created equal. If you consume too many calories from simple sugars like sucrose and fructose (think sugary sodas sweetened by sugar and high fructose corn syrup) then your body will more readily take some of those sugars and turn them into triglycerides (fat) in your liver. What happens to excess calories that come from carbs? The answer depends on several things: what kind of carbs you consumed, your genetics, as well as how many extra calories we’re talking about. For those who eat a well-balanced diet and have no metabolic disorders, excess dietary carbohydrates are converted by the liver into complex chains of glucose called glycogen. Glycogen is stored in liver and muscle cells and is a sec Continue reading >>
Carbohydrates, Proteins, Fats, And Blood Sugar
The body uses three main nutrients to function-carbohydrate, protein, and fat. These nutrients are digested into simpler compounds. Carbohydrates are used for energy (glucose). Fats are used for energy after they are broken into fatty acids. Protein can also be used for energy, but the first job is to help with making hormones, muscle, and other proteins. Nutrients needed by the body and what they are used for Type of nutrient Where it is found How it is used Carbohydrate (starches and sugars) Breads Grains Fruits Vegetables Milk and yogurt Foods with sugar Broken down into glucose, used to supply energy to cells. Extra is stored in the liver. Protein Meat Seafood Legumes Nuts and seeds Eggs Milk products Vegetables Broken down into amino acids, used to build muscle and to make other proteins that are essential for the body to function. ADVERTISINGinRead invented by Teads Fat Oils Butter Egg yolks Animal products Broken down into fatty acids to make cell linings and hormones. Extra is stored in fat cells. After a meal, the blood sugar (glucose) level rises as carbohydrate is digested. This signals the beta cells of the pancreas to release insulin into the bloodstream. Insulin helps glucose enter the body's cells to be used for energy. If all the glucose is not needed for energy, some of it is stored in fat cells and in the liver as glycogen. As sugar moves from the blood to the cells, the blood glucose level returns to a normal between-meal range. Several hormones and processes help regulate the blood sugar level and keep it within a certain range (70 mg/dL to 120 mg/dL). When the blood sugar level falls below that range, which may happen between meals, the body has at least three ways of reacting: Cells in the pancreas can release glucagon, a hormone that signals the b Continue reading >>
Dietary Fat And Blood Glucose
When most people with diabetes think about the effects that different foods have on their blood glucose levels, one particular component of foods usually comes to mind: carbohydrates. And rightfully so, since out of the three major macronutrients in the human diet — carbohydrates, proteins, and fats — carbohydrates have the greatest effect on blood glucose levels. But as a recent study makes clear, fats can also have a significant effect on blood glucose levels — both positive and negative. As many people with diabetes have experienced firsthand, eating fats in combination with carbohydrates can affect how quickly the carbohydrates are absorbed in the digestive tract, potentially leading to a slower, more sustained rise in blood glucose levels. But this study looked at a different, often overlooked aspect of dietary fat: what type it is — saturated, monounsaturated, or polyunsaturated — as well as the effect of substituting fat for carbohydrate. Published last month in the journal PLOS Medicine, the study examined 102 different clinical trials in which participants followed different diets and had their blood glucose, insulin, and HbA1c (a measure of long-term blood glucose control) levels recorded. A total of 4,220 adults — some of whom had diabetes — and 239 different diet groups were included in the study. Within each of the clinical trials, participants in each diet group consumed the same number of calories, regardless of the other aspects of their diet. As noted in a HealthDay article on the study, the researchers found that some fats raised blood glucose levels less than others — and that substituting some fats for carbohydrates could also lead to better blood glucose control. When participants switched out 5% of the calories in their diet from ca Continue reading >>
Conversion Of Carbohydrate To Fat In Adipose Tissue: An Energy-yielding And,therefore, Self-limiting Process.
Conversion of carbohydrate to fat in adipose tissue: an energy-yielding and,therefore, self-limiting process. A theoretical analysis of the energy metabolism associated with the conversion ofglucose to fat is presented. In tissues where the pentose cycle furnishes some ofthe NADPH required for fatty acid synthesis, this conversion is an ATP-yieldingprocess. In rat adipose tissue the maximal rate of glucose conversion to fat can be quantatively predicted on the basis of the tissue's ability to use the ATPwhich is generated in excess during this conversion. The energy-generating natureof this process provides the means for a type of regulation which depends onmetabolic state and which, during fasting, contributes to the sparing ofcarbohydrate. Impairment of lipogenesis in the fasting state is attributed to adecrease in the activity of the malate cycle and to the presence of free fattyacids. However, rather than by inhibiting specific enzymes, it is by virtue oftheir quality as substrates for energy production that free fatty acids and theirCoA derivatives appear to inhibit de novo lipogenesis. The regulatory phenomenadiscussed here may explain the failure of the attempts made to identify therate-limiting step for de novo lipogenesis in adipose tissue. Continue reading >>
How Sugar Makes You Fat
Look at how many grams of sugar are in what you’re eating (on the nutritional label). Now divide that number by 4. That’s how many teaspoons of pure sugar you’re consuming. Kinda scary, huh? Sugar makes you fat and fatfree food isn’t really free of fat. I’ve said it before in multiple articles, but occasionally, I’ve had someone lean over my desk and say “How in the heck does sugar make you fat if there’s no fat in it?”. This article will answer that puzzler, and provide you with some helpful suggestions to achieve not only weight loss success, but improved body health. First, let’s make some qualifications. Sugar isn’t inherently evil. Your body uses sugar to survive, and burns sugar to provide you with the energy necessary for life. Many truly healthy foods are actually broken down to sugar in the body – through the conversion of long and complex sugars called polysaccharides into short and simple sugars called monosaccharides, such as glucose. In additions to the breakdown products of fat and protein, glucose is a great energy source for your body. However, there are two ways that sugar can sabotage your body and cause fat storage. Excess glucose is the first problem, and it involves a very simple concept. Anytime you have filled your body with more fuel than it actually needs (and this is very easy to do when eating foods with high sugar content), your liver’s sugar storage capacity is exceeded. When the liver is maximally full, the excess sugar is converted by the liver into fatty acids (that’s right – fat!) and returned to the bloodstream, where is taken throughout your body and stored (that’s right – as fat!) wherever you tend to store adipose fat cells, including, but not limited to, the popular regions of the stomach, hips, but Continue reading >>
Sources Of Glucose
Our bodies convert food into energy. Although we get energy and calories from carbohydrate, protein, and fat, our main source of energy is from carbohydrate. Our bodies convert carbohydrate into glucose, a type of sugar. See Illustration: How Food Affects Blood Sugar Many foods contain a combination of carbohydrate, protein, and fat. The amount of each in the food we eat affects how quickly our bodies change that food into glucose. This is how different foods affect how our blood sugar levels: Carbohydrate: Includes bread, rice, pasta, potatoes, vegetables, fruit, sugar, yogurt, and milk. Our bodies change 100 percent of the carbohydrate we eat into glucose. This affects our blood sugar levels quickly, within an hour or two after eating Protein: Includes fish, meat, cheese, and peanut butter. Although our bodies change some of the protein we eat into glucose, most of this glucose is stored in our liver and not released into our bloodstream. Eating protein usually has very little impact on blood sugar. Fat: Includes butter, salad dressing, avocado, olive oil. We turn less than 10 percent of the fat we eat into glucose. The glucose from fat is absorbed slowly and it won't cause an immediate rise in blood sugar. Even though we don't get much glucose from fat, a meal that's high in fat can affect how fast our bodies digest carbohydrate. Because fat slows down the digestion of carbohydrate, it also slows down the rise in blood sugar levels. This sometimes can cause a high blood sugar level several hours after eating. For some people, this delayed reaction can be quite a surprise. For example, after eating a meal high in fat, a person might have a blood sugar reading that's close to normal before going to bed. But the next morning, he or she might have a fasting blood sugar t Continue reading >>
When Does Glucose Convert To Fat?
Despite the fact that eating a jelly doughnut seems to deposit fat directly on your hips, converting sugar to fat is actually a relatively complex chemical process. Sugar conversion to fat storage depends not only upon the type of foods you eat, but how much energy your body needs at the time you eat it. Video of the Day Your body converts excess dietary glucose into fat through the process of fatty acid synthesis. Fatty acids are required in order for your body to function properly, playing particularly important roles in proper brain functioning. There are two kinds of fatty acids; essential fatty acids and nonessential fatty acids. Essential fatty acids refer to fatty acids you must eat from your diet, as your body cannot make them. Nonessential fatty acids are made through the process of fatty acid synthesis. Fatty Acid Synthesis Fatty acids are long organic compounds having an acid group at one end and a methyl group at the other end. The location of their first double bond dictates whether they are in the omega 3, 6, or 9 fatty acid family. Fatty acid synthesis takes place in the cytoplasm of cells and requires some energy input. In other words, your body actually has to expend some energy in order to store fat. Glucose is a six-carbon sugar molecule. Your body first converts this molecule into two three-carbon pyruvate molecules through the process of glycolysis and then into acetyl CoA. When your body requires immediate energy, acetyl CoA enters the Citric Acid Cycle creating energy molecules in the form of ATP. When glucose intake exceeds your body's energy needs--for example, you eat an ice-cream sundae and then go relax on the sofa for five hours--your body has no need to create more energy molecules. Therefore, acetyl CoA begins the process of fatty acid syn Continue reading >>
How Fat Cells Work
In the last section, we learned how fat in the body is broken down and rebuilt into chylomicrons, which enter the bloodstream by way of the lymphatic system. Chylomicrons do not last long in the bloodstream -- only about eight minutes -- because enzymes called lipoprotein lipases break the fats into fatty acids. Lipoprotein lipases are found in the walls of blood vessels in fat tissue, muscle tissue and heart muscle. Insulin When you eat a candy bar or a meal, the presence of glucose, amino acids or fatty acids in the intestine stimulates the pancreas to secrete a hormone called insulin. Insulin acts on many cells in your body, especially those in the liver, muscle and fat tissue. Insulin tells the cells to do the following: The activity of lipoprotein lipases depends upon the levels of insulin in the body. If insulin is high, then the lipases are highly active; if insulin is low, the lipases are inactive. The fatty acids are then absorbed from the blood into fat cells, muscle cells and liver cells. In these cells, under stimulation by insulin, fatty acids are made into fat molecules and stored as fat droplets. It is also possible for fat cells to take up glucose and amino acids, which have been absorbed into the bloodstream after a meal, and convert those into fat molecules. The conversion of carbohydrates or protein into fat is 10 times less efficient than simply storing fat in a fat cell, but the body can do it. If you have 100 extra calories in fat (about 11 grams) floating in your bloodstream, fat cells can store it using only 2.5 calories of energy. On the other hand, if you have 100 extra calories in glucose (about 25 grams) floating in your bloodstream, it takes 23 calories of energy to convert the glucose into fat and then store it. Given a choice, a fat cell w Continue reading >>
How Are Carbohydrates Converted Into Fat Deposits?
How are carbohydrates converted into fat deposits? There are two ways that carbohydrates and body fat interact. One is directly by turning into body fat, and the other is via insulin. Turning into body fat is like adding fat into the fat cells, whereas carbohydrates spiking insulin does not add anything to fat cells per se, but hinders the release. The former is like a + equation, where the latter is a double negative which results in something that seems positive. There is a process called de novo lipogenesis (literally: Creation of fat from non-fat sources) that can occur in the body. This process turns glucose into lipids, which are then stored as body fat. This process is normally quite inefficient in the body  , which suggests that carbohydrates cannot be stored as fat to a high degree. The process can be upregulated (enhanced) if dietary fat comprised almost none of the diet (lesser than 10%, as a rough estimate), if carbohydrate intake is excessively high for a period of a few days, or if one follows an obesogenic diet (diet that is likely to make you fat) for a prolonged period of time.    Carbohydrates spike insulin , which is a hormone that mediates glucose metabolism. Insulin is not good or bad, insulin is insulin. It can be thought of as a lever that switches the body from fat burning mode into carbohydrate burning mode. This allows carbohydrates (and glycogen) to be burnt at a greater rate, but directly reduces the ability of fat to be lost. Overall metabolic rate (calories burnt over the course of a day) does not change significantly, just where the calories come from. When insulin is spiked in presence of ingested dietary fat, the dietary fat can go into body fat stores and not be released since glucose from glycogen is being used in place of Continue reading >>
We Really Can Make Glucose From Fatty Acids After All! O Textbook, How Thy Biochemistry Hast Deceived Me!
Biochemistry textbooks generally tell us that we can’t turn fatty acids into glucose. For example, on page 634 of the 2006 and 2008 editions of Biochemistry by Berg, Tymoczko, and Stryer, we find the following: Animals Cannot Convert Fatty Acids to Glucose It is important to note that animals are unable to effect the net synthesis of glucose from fatty acids. Specficially, acetyl CoA cannot be converted into pyruvate or oxaloacetate in animals. In fact this is so important that it should be written in italics and have its own bold heading! But it’s not quite right. Making glucose from fatty acids is low-paying work. It’s not the type of alchemy that would allow us to build imperial palaces out of sugar cubes or offer hourly sweet sacrifices upon the altar of the glorious god of glucose (God forbid!). But it can be done, and it’ll help pay the bills when times are tight. All Aboard the Acetyl CoA! When we’re running primarily on fatty acids, our livers break the bulk of these fatty acids down into two-carbon units called acetate. When acetate hangs out all by its lonesome like it does in a bottle of vinegar, it’s called acetic acid and it gives vinegar its characteristic smell. Our livers aren’t bottles of vinegar, however, and they do things a bit differently. They have a little shuttle called coenzyme A, or “CoA” for short, that carries acetate wherever it needs to go. When the acetate passenger is loaded onto the CoA shuttle, we refer to the whole shebang as acetyl CoA. As acetyl CoA moves its caboose along the biochemical railway, it eventually reaches a crossroads where it has to decide whether to enter the Land of Ketogenesis or traverse the TCA cycle. The Land of Ketogenesis is a quite magical place to which we’ll return in a few moments, but n Continue reading >>
Can Fats Be Turned Into Glycogen For Muscle?
The amount of fat in the average diet and the amount of stored fat in the average body make the notion of converting that fat into usable energy appealing. Glycogen, a form of energy stored in muscles for quick use, is what the body draws on first to perform movements, and higher glycogen levels result in higher usable energy. It is not possible for fats to be converted directly into glycogen because they are not made up glucose, but it is possible for fats to be indirectly broken down into glucose, which can be used to create glycogen. Relationship Between Fats and Glycogen Fats are a nutrient found in food and a compound used for long-term energy storage in the body, while glycogen is a chain of glucose molecules created by the body from glucose for short-term energy storage and utilization. Dietary fats are used for a number of functions in the body, including maintaining cell membranes, but they are not used primarily as a source of fast energy. Instead, for energy the body relies mostly on carbohydrates, which are converted into glucose that is then used to form glycogen. Turning Fats Into Glucose Excess glucose in the body is converted into stored fat under certain conditions, so it seems logical that glucose could be derived from fats. This process is called gluconeogenesis, and there are multiple pathways the body can use to achieve this conversion. Gluconeogenesis generally occurs only when the body cannot produce sufficient glucose from carbohydrates, such as during starvation or on a low-carbohydrate diet. This is less efficient than producing glucose through the metabolizing of carbohydrates, but it is possible under the right conditions. Turning Glucose Into Glycogen Once glucose has been obtained from fats, your body easily converts it into glycogen. In gl Continue reading >>
Sugar Vs Fat
Tweet Sugar and fat are two of the most widely talked about dietary topics, with one of the most commonly asked questions by people with (and without) diabetes being 'how much sugar or fat can I have in my diet?' Sugar Limiting the amount of sugar we take in should be a priority for all people, not just individuals with diabetes. Sucrose (table sugar) is a major part of some of our favourite daytime snacks like cakes and biscuits, but what many people fail to remember is that sugar is also present in a wide range of other foods. These include: Cereals Fruit drinks and smoothies Fruit yoghurts Ready meals Soups Aside from energy (calories), sugar provides no nutrition which is why it is often referred to as 'empty calories'. It also increases blood glucose levels quickly, which is one of the reasons why people with diabetes are advised to limit their daily intake of sugar (the NHS recommends consuming less than 70g a day of sugar for men and under 50g of sugar a day for women). In fact, limiting sugar intake is a good way to start getting your blood glucose levels under control. Cutting back on the amount of processed foods you eat is also recommended as the majority contain added sugars and in the UK, manufacturers are currently not required to state how much sugar has been added in processing. But saying no to sugary foods in an effort to restrict your sugar intake can be difficult, especially if those around you (friends, work colleagues, relatives, etc) often indulge in sweet food and drink. Sugary snacks such as energy drinks (lucozade) and glucose tablets are used to prevent or treat hypoglycemia, so don't worry about taking these if you are at risk of hypos. Fat For decades, fat has been labelled the 'bad guy' in diet and nutrition. However in recent years, a numb Continue reading >>