Adiponectin: What is Your Number?

Category: Patient Engagement Written by Dr. Charles Shively / March 19, 2019

Why is this number important? Adiponectin is the bioactive long chain protein (a 244 amino acid composite) hormone made by fat cells that circulates in the bloodstream and triggers how the body uses sugar, and fat for energy, including weight loss. It is a diabetic friendly hormone. It helps stimulate the breakdown of fat molecules so the body can use the resulting energy for other metabolic activities. Perhaps most importantly, it also signals the liver to stop making or releasing glucose when blood glucose levels get too high. Working together, these two activities can increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin. Insulin, of course is the hormone that helps people use blood glucose for energy and improve the diabetes condition.

How can adiponectin make this happen? Obesity is associated with both type 2 diabetes and low adiponectin levels. Higher blood levels of adiponectin are associated with improved sensitivity to insulin and lower blood glucose levels. Weight loss can be a key intervention to help increase adiponectin levels and support weight loss and a diabetic friendly condition. With improved nutrition adiponectin levels the body can reach homeostasis until appropriate BMI (body mass index) is reached for each individual. BMI index is a height and weight ratio. Research has confirmed that weight loss significantly elevates plasma levels of adiponectin and contributes to improved cardiovascular and liver pathology.

How does diet affect adiponectin levels? Many research studies support that increased consumption of saturated fats (bad fats) found in cheese, red meats and butter, decrease the levels of adiponectin in the body. Individuals with diabetes should benefit from avoiding high diets in saturated fats as deceased adiponectin and a reduced sensitivity to insulin can cause higher blood sugar levels . “Good fats” exist as mono-unsaturdated and poly -unsaturated fats, found in olive oil, nuts and avocados and can assist in raising adiponectin levels. Recently research studies have shown one dietary supplement for weight loss and meal replacement with key amino acids can provide the foundation for increased adiponectin availability and the subsequent adiponectin gene expression (body conversion) for use and introduction into the blood stream. Available worldwide, this product is the Almased powder used for “smoothie” preparations with unsweetened almond milk, soy milk, or water.,,

How do higher adiponectin levels help an individual be more healthy? Adiponectin can adjust glucose utilization, impact lipid levels, protect against plaque formation, boost metabolism, fuel overall fat loss and reduce TNF-alpha factor and subsequent inflammation ( tumor necrosis factor). These positive effects are most prominent in insulin-insensitive individuals. It has also been learned through research that adiponectin would appear to have an important role in the pathology of dyslipidemia (abnormal levels of triglycerides and cholesterol) and can affect HDL and LDL levels metabolism when low blood levels of adiponectin exist. Studies have shown that adiponectin may interfere with the adhesion of molecules associated with plaque formation in the circulatory system and subsequent coronary artery disease. Insulin resistance is central to the pathology of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Non alcoholic steatosis hepatitis (NASH) can lead to cirrhosis and liver function without adequate adiponectin levels and may be the hepatic result of insulin resistance. Adiponectin also works to support the control of metabolic syndrome often associated in obese and insulin insensitive individuals. It is known that levels of adiponectin are lower in hypotensive and diabetic patients compared with non-diabetic individuals and has particularly low blood levels in coronary artery disease. It has been also recently determined that adiponectin may be factor in the pathology of attention deficent disease (ADD). It should be mentioned that men typically show lower levels of adiponectin than women as a general rule.

Adiponectin is Both Fat Friendly and Diabetic Friendly

For many individuals the pursuit of a healthy and constant weight can be a nutritional challenge. The life cycle of nutrition for most adults requires constant attention. Dietary support of hormone availability such as adiponectin and its fat burning partner, leptin, do require awareness of what food is consumed. The importance of amino acid levels contained in the food to support availability of adiponectin for conversion in the body to impact glucose levels and support faster metabolism for weight loss is critical. Always read the labels of foods that are consumed.

Be Well!

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