Allostatic Load (AL) to Lifestyle Diseases (LSDs) is, what a mosquito sting to Dengue is.
Every time a mosquito stings, you may not get Dengue, but without a mosquito sting you cannot get Dengue. Similarly, AL doesn’t mean LSD, but without AL, there is no chance of LSD.
To understand AL, there are two terms to familiarize you with:
Homeostasis and Allostasis:
Homeostasis is the tendency of the body to maintain parameters like body temperature, blood sugar, heart rate etc. at ideal levels irrespective of outside environment.
It involves adaptation and change in response to environmental factors. Have you ever wondered why the structure of the body does not change with the amount of food or water ingested? Similarly if a person does not drink water for even one day, he does not shrivel like dry vegetable. Both these occur as the body has the ability to maintain ideal internal conditions whatever the external factors are. This is the example of Homeostasis. But the body has to make an effort to maintain this homeostasis. The effort required in maintaining homeostasis is called Allostasis.
The body activates its neural, endocrine and immune mechanisms to restore homeostasis.
These mechanisms cause ‘the wear and tear on the body’. Allostatic load is the accumulation of this ‘wear and tear’, which, shows up as a Lifestyle Disease. The Allostatic load is influenced by both physiological measurements like Lipid Profile and physical measurements like waist/hip ratio.
Allostatic Load and LSDs:
LDL of 140 and Triglycerides of 145, individually, are not a health risk because both are below normal. But both of them are considered to be higher than normal and if they occur together, the body has to make an extra effort to restore normalcy and in the process, it suffers more ‘wear and tear’. So if more parameters are in higher than normal range, allostatic load increases and causes a greater damage to vital organs of the body, which eventually leads to Lifestyle Diseases (LSDs).
Allostatic Load and not the sedentary lifestyle is the cause of LSDs:
Sedentary lifestyle is often blamed for the present spurt in LSDs. If this were true, the Naxal leaders, who trek for miles together, would not have become Diabetic. Stress as a cause of LSDs also cannot stand scrutiny, because housewives are as prone to LSDs as executives of firms. Age as a factor for LSDs is long forgotten, because LSDs do not spare even young people. So the most plausible explanation for spurt in LSDs is Allostatic Load caused by Insulin Resistance (IR).
Other elements like stress, sedentary life are contributors at best.
Our Service Offerings:
- We make a alostatic report for you based on your medical reports and identify areas that can be reduced or even contained with nutrition
- We make nutrition plans that support your medical conditions
- We make nutrition plans that make your medications more effective