Insulin Sensitivity

A relation of how well Insulin in the body is able to affect cells by inducing insulin-like effects. Insulin resistance is poor efficacy in affecting cells, and insulin sensitivity is good efficacy. Chronic Insulin resistance is one of the pathological signs of type II diabetes.


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Insulin Sensitivity is a function of how well your body can handle glucose (blood sugar) through insulin secretion. Insulin is secreted from an organ called the pancreas in response to elevating blood sugar, and the less insulin that is needed to get the job done is how sensitive you are to insulin.

For a somewhat full review of insulin sensitivity, please refer to our FAQ page on increasing insulin sensitivity.

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In general, being more insulin sensitive is better. If you had to blindly choose between being insulin sensitive or resistant, sensitive is probably the way to go.

Keep in mind that there are times where insulin resistance is good. The third trimester of pregnancy is one where insulin resistance is good as by hindering the ability of the mother to get glucose the baby gets more (up until a point, gestational diabetes is not that good) and fat loss diets and supplements tend to induce transient states of insulin resistance; the latter is not wholly bad because you should be having less food anyways and thus there really isn't any drastic spike in blood glucose to be resistant to on a fat loss diet (if you are doing it right).

Kurtis Frank

Insulin, sensitivity, resistance

The Human Effect Matrix looks at human studies (excluding animal/petri-dish studies) to tell you what what supplements affect Insulin Sensitivity
GradeLevel of Evidence
ARobust research conducted with repeated double blind clinical trials
BMultiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled
CSingle double blind study or multiple cohort studies
DUncontrolled or observational studies only
Level of Evidence
Magnitude of Effect Size
Scientific ConsensusComments
AFish Oil
Comparative Health Goals evidence only available to buyers of our Supplement-Goals Reference

All information is still available and viewable on their respective supplement page.
AConjugated Linoleic Acid
BGreen Tea Catechins
BPanax ginseng
BCocoa Extract
BVitamin B3
CVitamin D
CAlpha-Lipoic Acid
CTauroursodeoxycholic Acid
CVitamin C
CPunicic Acid
CWhey Protein
COlive leaf extract
CStinging Nettle
CGynostemma pentaphyllum
CJapanese Knotweed
CRoyal Jelly
CSodium Bicarbonate
CVitamin K
CRed Clover Extract
CRose Hip
CVitamin E
DCoconut Oil
DSafflower Oil
DTetradecyl Thioacetic Acid


  1. Morken T, et al. Anti-inflammatory and hypolipidemic effects of the modified fatty acid tetradecylthioacetic acid in psoriasis--a pilot study. Scand J Clin Lab Invest. (2011)
  2. Løvås K, et al. Tetradecylthioacetic acid attenuates dyslipidaemia in male patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus, possibly by dual PPAR-alpha/delta activation and increased mitochondrial fatty acid oxidation. Diabetes Obes Metab. (2009)
  3. Pettersen RJ, et al. Pharmacology and safety of tetradecylthioacetic acid (TTA): phase-1 study. J Cardiovasc Pharmacol. (2008)
  4. Fredriksen J, et al. Lipid-lowering and anti-inflammatory effects of tetradecylthioacetic acid in HIV-infected patients on highly active antiretroviral therapy. Eur J Clin Invest. (2004)

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