Energy gels and Insulin response

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Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby mikesbytes » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:41 pm

I just had my first orange juice in goodness knows how long and I feel good. I'm assuming I'm feeling good because I've spiked my insulin.

But before we discuss this some ground rules. This thread is not about what is a good or bad diet or how to loose weight, if you were looking for those sorts of topics please go here;
  1. Discuss your weight loss journey http://bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=49&t=60183
  2. Argue about the pros and cons of different diets http://bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=49&t=61166
  3. Discuss about the pros and cons of different diets http://bicycles.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=49&t=61818
  4. Need a different topic, find or create one here http://bicycles.net.au/forums/viewforum.php?f=49

OK when I race I consume energy gels to keep me (for want of a better word) spiked, but what are the energy gels actually doing for me? Are they causing an insulin response and if so how is that helping me

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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby sogood » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:49 pm

Why are you worried about what's in the black box? If you need orange juice, then drink orange juice. If you need energy gel, then suck an energy gel. What happens in the middle is inconsequential.
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby matagi » Tue Feb 26, 2013 8:16 pm

Perhaps he is concerned about likely longterm physiological effects of frequent insulin spikes?
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby liamb » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:27 pm

The insulin spike is because you are consuming extremely saturated sugars and the body need to process the energy you have consumed, in greater quantities than normal. There are many things that happen in the body which I dont know enough about but it is normal body reaction "turbo charged". In an ideal world you would do something similar to me (type 1 diabetic) check your blood sugar levels and when you start dropping you consume the gel and get the energy. ( this is not instant usually about 5-10 mins depending on the person). Insulin spikes over time can be problematic as it makes the body do things it would not normally do and if the energy is unused you end up with a "over supply" of energy the body has to process/ store. Once again in an ideal world you would top up when needed but this is not practical. I am not sure if this is directly related but for a Type 1 diabetic fluctuating blood sugar levels causes health problems and illness and as a result of the BSL's spiking insulin doses spike as well. I am no expert by any means but for all the research and medical expert guidance I have had over 33 plus years it has always come back to sensible diets to match the amount of energy you need to use up. As 1 quack said to me you are not a Pro and more than likely you will have a family to support and friend you want to ride with why mess with you body unnecessarily. I know this is not a direct answer to you and I suspect there are a huge number web pages out there that tell you different. Only take the Peer reviewed as gospel

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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby sogood » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:59 pm

Don't try to manage the impossible-to-manage or it can consume the person 24/7. Live in moderation and the body will look after itself just fine.

PS. The Type I diabetic scenario is not relevant.
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby mikesbytes » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:11 am

I'm not concerned about long term effects, I don't have gels that often. I'm interested in understanding what the gels are doing.

I know a Type 1 diabetic (sogood knows him too) and his diet is terrible, he would learn a lot from you liamb
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby sogood » Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:13 am

mikesbytes wrote:I'm not concerned about long term effects, I don't have gels that often. I'm interested in understanding what the gels are doing.

The gels are no different to having carbo rich food, just concentrated and in easily absorbable and utilisable forms. Those gels often contain caffeine too. Read the label.

But if you are truly interested in the wonders of the energy pathways and the human body, I'd strongly suggest that you borrow a standard physiology and biochemistry textbook. These have been summarized by respected authors and will give you a far better overview of the big picture. With further interests, you can then seek out review articles on specific matters. Jumping into highly focused research papers will so easily mislead readers with limited or non-existent background knowledge. Gain a solid understanding of the field and then dwell into the details.
Last edited by sogood on Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:35 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby clackers » Wed Feb 27, 2013 10:22 am

Remember what they are, Mike. A 100 or so calorie boost in a small packet of a mixture of higher (sugars) and lower (maltodextrin) GI carbs. There may be just two teaspoons of sugar in, for example, a GU gel.

That's why you take several of these things spread out 45 minutes apart, or empty your Gatorade bidon over the course of an hour.

They're more gradual on your system than the Danish pastry or vanilla slice at the bakery, if less enjoyable. :smile:
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby InTheWoods » Wed Feb 27, 2013 1:05 pm

While this won't answer about insulin, this will help you with what your body does with the carbs in a gel while you are riding. Fascinating videos.

viewtopic.php?f=37&t=59491

I bought some brand of gels from Coles the other day, they are mostly maltodextrin with very little sugar. Its not like when you have one gel pack every 45 minutes that you've just eaten a *lot* of carbs, its just that they are almost entirely carbs with virtually no energy coming from fat or protein. What's a gel, about 400kj? That's only a bit over 1 slice of bread... Plus once you're into your ride a lot of muscle cells are going to be wanting to pluck those carbs out of your bloodstream and will be hoovering them up a lot faster than if you were sitting on a couch.
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby sogood » Wed Feb 27, 2013 1:38 pm

InTheWoods wrote:While this won't answer about insulin, this will help you with what your body does with the carbs in a gel while you are riding. Fascinating videos.

viewtopic.php?f=37&t=59491

That's a great series of videos! It feels just like a 1st year biochemistry lecture. Very well done! 8)
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby Venus62 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:10 pm

sogood wrote: It feels just like a 1st year biochemistry lecture. Very well done! 8)


On no! Traumatic flashbacks... :shock:
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby durianrider » Wed Mar 06, 2013 7:28 am

Want to know about carbs and insulin levels then educate yourself and read this book from the world authority on diabetes.

Image

That way you get it straight from the good doctor vs anonymous & sincere yet sincerely wrong people.

BTW animal products raise insulin the most.
http://fanaticcook.blogspot.com.au/2008 ... tmeal.html

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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby Venus62 » Wed Mar 06, 2013 7:45 am

Either you don't understand what you are posting or you don't care that you have it wrong. The chart you keep posting is not the insulin response to various foods. It is looking at the RATIO of insulin release to glycaemic index. This isn't surprising at all as it is well known that protein induces an insulin response but does not have a high GI.

Here is the actual insulin response induced by an equal kJ meal of different foods. Notice where beef is this time? Lower than bananas!!

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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby clackers » Wed Mar 06, 2013 7:50 am

Venus62 wrote:Either you don't understand what you are posting or you don't care that you have it wrong. The chart you keep posting is not the insulin response to various foods. It is looking at the RATIO of insulin release to glycaemic index.


Agreed. That was a disgraceful post - by both DurianRider and presumably the author, misrepresenting science to advance a vegetarian agenda. :x
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby Venus62 » Wed Mar 06, 2013 7:54 am

clackers wrote:Agreed. That was a disgraceful post, misrepresenting science to advance a vegetarian agenda. :x


It helps when you go to the original paper and not trust a blog pushing a certain agenda. I note how the description was conveniently cropped off Durian's chart. Don't want people to get the facts, do we? :roll:
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby sogood » Wed Mar 06, 2013 7:54 am

durianrider wrote:Want to know about carbs and insulin levels then educate yourself and read this book from the world authority on diabetes.
Image

Nice sensationalistic book title that's great for money spinning and self-promotion. If he had some unique and reliable program to reverse diabetes, then he should have received the Nobel prize by now.

Otherwise the interesting bits that I got out of his bios were,
1) A vegan diet advocate.
2) Specialty training in psychiatry.

Drianrider, I think your overt enthusiasm in health sciences has once again led to some most inappropriate references for your desired claims. Yes, the good psychiatrist Doctor certainly has your psyche hooked!
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby mikesbytes » Wed Mar 06, 2013 8:07 am

Hi durianrider this thread isn't about diet, please read the first post cheers Mike
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby liamb » Wed Mar 06, 2013 9:47 am

add to all the other comments re the book it only relates to Type 2 only (ie over weights and age related) diabetes which also add to the sensationalism of the book. I can see where he is coming from at times but it is data based on diets for the obese yank.

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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby casual_cyclist » Wed Mar 06, 2013 4:38 pm

mikesbytes wrote:OK when I race I consume energy gels to keep me (for want of a better word) spiked, but what are the energy gels actually doing for me? Are they causing an insulin response and if so how is that helping me

Ok, I'm not a biochemist but here is my understanding. Insulin is one part of the equation along with blood glucose. My simplistic understanding is this: you consume the energy gel which is absorbed and enters your bloodstream as glucose? In response to higher blood glucose, your pancreas secretes insulin which enters your bloodstream.
Although there is always a low level of insulin secreted by the pancreas, the amount secreted into the blood increases as the blood glucose rises. Similarly, as blood glucose falls, the amount of insulin secreted by the pancreatic islets goes down.

This is normal blood glucose regulation and demonstrates the insulin response you are asking about. What is it for?
...insulin has an effect on a number of cells, including muscle, red blood cells, and fat cells. In response to insulin, these cells absorb glucose out of the blood, having the net effect of lowering the high blood glucose levels into the normal range.

In your case, taking a gel during exercise, presumably the insulin stimulates muscle cells to take up glucose for energy.

Of course it is more complex than that... http://www.endocrineweb.com/conditions/diabetes/normal-regulation-blood-glucose

There is recent research on the impact of different types of foods on circulating insulin and blood glucose levels which found that:
...postprandial insulin responses are not always proportional to blood glucose concentrations...

It's well worth a read if you want to know more about how different foods increase levels of insulin and blood glucose respectivly but not proportionately. Presumably for intense exercise you would want a high glucose response and a higher insulin response to stimulate your muscle cells to uptake the glucose. For example in the study, porridge (which we would associate with slower energy release) had a glucose score of 60 and an insulin score of 40. I would have porridge before a long ride for sustained energy release. On the other hand jellybeans (which we would associate with quick energy) had a glucose score of 118 and an insulin score of 160! I would more likely have jellybeans in a race for a fast but shorter energy hit. Although, jellybeans are a bit inconvenient when racing, hence the gels.

Link to the study here: http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/66/5/1264.full.pdf

Hope this helps.
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby wurtulla wabbit » Wed Mar 06, 2013 8:13 pm

Endura gels on my 100klms ride saved my ass as I was buggered..

Took a gel and 5 mins max, boom, in the zone again ! :D

Don't use them often so happy that moderation is key.
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby Aussiebullet » Mon Mar 11, 2013 6:43 am

mikesbytes wrote:I just had my first orange juice in goodness knows how long and I feel good. I'm assuming I'm feeling good because I've spiked my insulin.

OK when I race I consume energy gels to keep me (for want of a better word) spiked, but what are the energy gels actually doing for me? Are they causing an insulin response and if so how is that helping me

Research Tool


During continuous strenuous exercise there is little to no insulin response reguardless of the type of sugar/food consumed,
insulin is released when blood sugar levels rise so during exercise we are drawing on glycogen reserves,
take a gel and we stop drawing as much glycogen and use the gel as fuel as soon as it's been digested and released into the blood stream,
It's very hard to take in enough food/gels during exercise to cause an insulin spike, too much food/gels during exercise and we end up with gastric distress and will need to slow down or stop and then maybee blood sugar levels will rise enough to cause an insulin spike, still no big deal as it will be converted to glycogen and shuttled back into liver and muscle cells to replace what glycogen was used during the race or whatever strenuous activity we were doing just as it was designed to do.

Without the release of insulin I would not be able to refuel adequately enough to do my back to back training sessions and get in my 15 - 20hrs wk of training & racing let alone do my job which is very very physically demanding.
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby casual_cyclist » Mon Mar 11, 2013 3:41 pm

Aussiebullet wrote:
mikesbytes wrote:I just had my first orange juice in goodness knows how long and I feel good. I'm assuming I'm feeling good because I've spiked my insulin.

OK when I race I consume energy gels to keep me (for want of a better word) spiked, but what are the energy gels actually doing for me? Are they causing an insulin response and if so how is that helping me

Research Tool


During continuous strenuous exercise there is little to no insulin response reguardless of the type of sugar/food consumed,
insulin is released when blood sugar levels rise so during exercise we are drawing on glycogen reserves,
take a gel and we stop drawing as much glycogen and use the gel as fuel as soon as it's been digested and released into the blood stream,
It's very hard to take in enough food/gels during exercise to cause an insulin spike, too much food/gels during exercise and we end up with gastric distress and will need to slow down or stop and then maybee blood sugar levels will rise enough to cause an insulin spike, still no big deal as it will be converted to glycogen and shuttled back into liver and muscle cells to replace what glycogen was used during the race or whatever strenuous activity we were doing just as it was designed to do.

Without the release of insulin I would not be able to refuel adequately enough to do my back to back training sessions and get in my 15 - 20hrs wk of training & racing let alone do my job which is very very physically demanding.

Looks about right. This study describes a slight increase in insulin during intense exercise...
Despite the increase of plasma glucose that this GP-GU difference causes, plasma insulin concentration does not change or may even increase slightly. There are two contributing factors. The first is that the high concentrations of catecholamines (acting through a dominant α-adrenergic effect) can prevent glucose stimulation of insulin secretion. The second may be a decrease in insulin disposal (see below). These glucoregulatory responses and their regulation during intense exercise are shown in schematic fashion in Fig. 3.

Further marked changes ensue at exhaustion. Notable is the marked increase of plasma insulin that lasts up to 60 min during recovery (Fig. 1B) (e.g., 19,21,22), starting with the immediate and rapid decrease of NE and EPI concentrations. This reflects a rapid waning of the α-receptor–mediated inhibition of the β-cell response to hyperglycemia (with a probable return toward resting rates of insulin disposal). The simultaneous increases of glucose and insulin concentrations create a milieu that should favor repletion of at least part of the muscle glycogen mobilized during the exercise. Such rapid replenishment of muscle glycogen is important because in many such activities there is frequent repetition of short bouts of intense exercise. That the recovery hyperinsulinemia is a physiologically essential early recovery response is illustrated by results in diabetic subjects, as described below.

http://diabetes.diabetesjournals.org/content/51/suppl_1/S271.long
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby durianrider » Mon Mar 18, 2013 4:37 pm

Venus62 wrote:Either you don't understand what you are posting or you don't care that you have it wrong. The chart you keep posting is not the insulin response to various foods. It is looking at the RATIO of insulin release to glycaemic index. This isn't surprising at all as it is well known that protein induces an insulin response but does not have a high GI.

Here is the actual insulin response induced by an equal kJ meal of different foods. Notice where beef is this time? Lower than bananas!!

Image


You have taken it out of context.

You trying to tell me that to 'beef up' one should eat bananas vs beef? Tell that to the sumo wrestlers of Japan. Tell it to non diabetic bodybuilders that use insulin to increase bodyweight. A quick browse of any bodybuilding forum will expose the dangerous practice of non diabetics using insulin for weight gain.

Dr Barnard -Slim
Dr Atkins - Obese

Just by results vs theory.

Want to lower insulin levels then stick with energy gels and low fat, low protein high carb plant based diets as the good doctor has ordered.
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby Venus62 » Mon Mar 18, 2013 4:41 pm

durianrider wrote:
Venus62 wrote:Either you don't understand what you are posting or you don't care that you have it wrong. The chart you keep posting is not the insulin response to various foods. It is looking at the RATIO of insulin release to glycaemic index. This isn't surprising at all as it is well known that protein induces an insulin response but does not have a high GI.

Here is the actual insulin response induced by an equal kJ meal of different foods. Notice where beef is this time? Lower than bananas!!

Image


You have taken it out of context.

You trying to tell me that to 'beef up' one should eat bananas vs beef?


What on earth are you talking about?? I said no such thing. I'm simply correcting your false assertion that beef raises insulin levels to a greater extent than any other food. Your earlier post was wrong, pure and simple. Be man enough to admit it and apologise.

Just as a reminder; here's what you said: "BTW animal products raise insulin the most." WRONG!!!
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Re: Energy gels and Insulin response

Postby durianrider » Tue Mar 19, 2013 12:59 pm

Have a read of this link. It has the studies attached.

http://fanaticcook.blogspot.com.au/2008 ... tmeal.html

Why do Australians have such high fasting insulin levels? Is it from organic bananas and steamed rice that we are famous for consuming OR is it the beef, lamb, fish, milk etc that 99% of Aussies consume like they will die by lunchtime from a protein deficiency otherwise.

Image

Now read the following and let me know if you know anyone personally that fits the symptoms. What are their fav foods? Meat pies,ice coffee, tim tams (50% cals from fat) steak OR steamed rice and sliced mango?

*Insulin encourages fat storage and weight gain. Hyperinsulinism is what makes it hard for many people to lose weight.

*Insulin increases salt and water retention, a recipe for high blood pressure.

*Insulin is directly involved in creating atherosclerotic plaques, which, if not controlled, can lead to heart disease.

*High insulin levels have been shown to correlate with high levels of triglycerides and low levels of "good" HDL cholesterol.

*High insulin levels correlate with increased risk of breast cancer and polycystic ovarian syndrome. Conversely, the lower levels of insulin, the better the survival rates for breast cancer.
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