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I found a study suggesting that consumption of protein also causes an Insulin spike, is this true?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 18, 2011 at 9:03 AM

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC292828/

There is the article. What are your thoughts on this?

8a3fdcbbec724506de15c14bb6271264

(435)

on February 18, 2011
at 04:27 PM

Thank you, this clears it up. I forgot that protein (but not carbs) causes glucagon secretion as well, in addition to insulin. And they work as antagonists.

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7 Answers

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6
47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on February 18, 2011
at 10:13 AM

Yes, it is true. A more recent, and fairly well-known, study is this one:

"An insulin index of foods: the insulin demand generated by 1000-kJ portions of common foods." (If you click on the upper right you can get to the full text. (Or this should work.))

One thing you can see in the newer study is that while the insulin effects of high-protein foods are somewhat higher than you would expect (but in most cases still not as high as carbohydrate), the blood glucose levels are still pretty low. So if the greater danger to the body is in the blood sugar spike, then you can rest assured that that is not going to happen to the same degree with protein.

In fact, you might wonder why there is any rise in blood sugar at all. You might even wonder why there isn't a crash in blood sugar after the consumption of protein without any carbohydrate, since the release of insulin in response to the protein would shut down the liver's release of glucose without there being any incoming glucose to take its place. Well, this doesn't happen, thanks to insulin's "partner," glucagon, which tells the liver to keep the glucose coming.

So what is the insulin doing when you eat that protein? Remember that insulin is anabolic, broadly speaking; it builds things up, and we can thank it for that. In this case it's sending off those amino acids into the muscles where they are needed.

But let's not ask about insulin's role in obesity, because that's the can of worms that no one wants to open right now ...

8a3fdcbbec724506de15c14bb6271264

(435)

on February 18, 2011
at 04:27 PM

Thank you, this clears it up. I forgot that protein (but not carbs) causes glucagon secretion as well, in addition to insulin. And they work as antagonists.

3
93b2e3c143c962cf8c92e6316a483ddf

(150)

on February 18, 2011
at 02:56 PM

There is not an insulin spike, but it is true that up to 50% of the protein you eat is eventually converted to glucose. As a 26-year diabetic, I can assure you that eating protein does not cause a spike in my glucose levels (and I have a broken metabolism). The levels do go up some, but not a lot and not quickly. This morning my breakfast consisted of about 30g. of protein and about a gram of carbs. My post-prandial blood sugar rose only 9 points.

1
6371f0ae0c075ded1b8cd30aafd4bf16

on June 17, 2011
at 05:28 AM

As a Type 1 diabetic if I eat a large amount of protein I can get a considerable raise in Blood Glucose Levels which I then have to accompany with a larger than expected insulin injection.

1
100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on February 18, 2011
at 01:41 PM

Since protein is usually accompanied by fat, at least animal sources, this effect is normally mitigated.

1
4781cf8ae1bfcb558dfb056af17bea94

(4359)

on February 18, 2011
at 01:31 PM

That's one of the primary functions of insulin. Insulin opens up little channels into cells, allowing glucose AND amino acids to enter the cell. It's not patholigical at all.

0
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on February 18, 2011
at 09:54 AM

yes, it is

quite natural, considering that the main action of insulin is inhibition of lipolysis: pancreas try to say adipocytes to stop spilling fat out

0
89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on February 18, 2011
at 09:47 AM

Is it true? Well, the study shows it is true... But does it matter?

For a non diabetic, rather healthy person probably not.

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