Does an "Insulin Resistance" diet improve blood pressure? (Initially posted on January, 2005)
I self-diagnosed myself as being insulin resistant on Dec 11, 2004. The clues were there. For many years, my morning blood pressure would start at a reasonable level around 120/80, and then "gradually" increase all day long until around 5-6pm. Then, unlike normal hypertensives, my blood pressure would really start to climb until it got to around 180/115 and would remain at that level, or higher, throughout the night. Also, I was having problems with difficulty breathing, and with an erratic heartbeat, frequently made worse after consuming foods with carbs. My heart failure was getting worse and I was suffering daily with increased chest pains, fatigue, sweating, difficulty concentrating, racing heart, all of which got worse after consuming foods high in carbohydrates. I just could not get my blood pressure under control no matter how many herbs, meds, vitamins or minerals that I took.
I convinced myself to, at least, attempt to follow an Insulin Resistant diet, not really thinking that it would really work. So...... with the help of my tireless, understanding wife, on Dec 11th, 2004 I started on a high fiber diet to target Insulin Resistance. I started eating small meals, five times per day, 1/2 cup of fiber, 1/2 cup of a proper veggy, with a few variations.
Since then, I've noticed some improvements in my energy level, and in just feeling better. My blood pressure also was coming down a little, day by day. I've also lost quite few pounds.
It took about three weeks of this insulin resistant diet before my evening blood pressure started to also get lower, and I started feeling better. I am hoping that I will also experience some relief from all of the nasty symptoms of my heart disease.
It is too early to assess the the total effect of the Insulin Resistant Diet on my blood pressure, and on my other nasty symptoms, but I like the results so far, even though my "average" blood pressure is still too high.
I've taken about 15,000 BP readings over seven years, and I have never had a trend towards lowered blood pressure like I am getting now. Taking the 15,000 readings, entering them into my computer, and studying the results and charts from the data, helped me to improve my "average" blood pressure, and reduce the frequency of dangerously high readings, but, prior to this diet, I hadn't been able to get my average blood pressure consistantly going down, and my heart disease and health continued to deteriorate.
I am just hoping that the trend towards lower blood pressure continues, and that I continue to experience improvements in my heart failure, as I, not only, continue the diet, but also continue to make other effective changes. During my twenty year battle against Heart Failure, I have discovered many "ordinary" things that cause nasty increases in blood pressure and cause the heart to race, or skip beats, or beat more forcefully or too beat too weakly, or beat too slow, etc. If those "ordinary" things are not avoided, then the "average" blood pressure will be at a worse level, and the heart will suffer from unhealthy and serious rhythm problems, and the heart failure will get progressively worse, regardless of the quality of diet, and regardless of blood pressure medications!
Any comments? Anyone, with significant heart disease and with chronically high blood pressure, experience improvement to their blood pressure, or from their other health problems, from an Insulin Resistant diet?