Many people are not familiar with HOMA-IR insulin resistance. HOMA is an acronym that stands for “homeostatic model assessment.” This technique (or model) is designed to quantify insulin resistance and beta cell function. IR is a condition that is associated with diabetes because a diabetic’s body does not know how to handle insulin properly. Either the pancreas does not produce enough (or any) insulin, or the body does not use it as it should. Insulin is an essential substance that the body needs to successfully keep blood sugar levels in check. Put simply, insulin resistance takes place when the cells in the body become resistant to the effects of insulin. When this happens, increased amounts of insulin are necessary to be effective. Medical experts have not pinned the onset of insulin resistance on a single factor, but they believe genetics plays a major role. Other risk factors for the insulin resistance include metabolic syndrome, obesity, infection, severe illness, stress and steroid use. Pregnant women are also susceptible. Insulin resistance happens in the body before type 2 diabetes develops. Therefore, IR is a sign that a person is at a high risk for developing the disease. When it occurs, a person should take the steps to slow and/or reverse the process.

In recent years it has become possible for a person to measure their HOMA-IR insulin resistance at home. The HOMA-IR insulin resistance is a mathematical equation used to estimate steady state beta cell function as well as insulin sensitivity. In layman’s terms, HOMA-IR insulin resistance is a formula that measures insulin. Using this procedure helps to determine if a person is experiencing insulin resistance.

The formula for HOMA-IR Insulin Resistance looks like this:

HOMA-IR fasting plasma insulin (µIU/mL) x fasting plasma glucose (mmol/L) 22.5

According to information released by the University of Oxford, a HOMA-IR insulin resistance calculator was released in 2004. The calculator, which operates on several computer platforms, provides a fast and user-friendly solution for people who want to calculate their HOMA-IR insulin resistance level without consulting a doctor. Certain symptoms can also provide clues that insulin resistance is taking place in a person. eMedicineHealth’s website provides some of thesesignals on their website. They include abdominal obesity, elevated cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. However, there are many other conditions that are associated with IR, including metabolic syndrome. Researchers are not sure whether IR causes these conditions or vice versa, but it is an area that continues to receive special attention within the medical community. If a person believes they could be suffering from insulin resistance, they should seek immediate medical attention. A glucose tolerance test or fasting glucose test may be administered to determine if insulin resistance is present.