These are my ideas, wolfette; I have not found a researcher who agrees – the closest is Dr. Noel Rose, who wrote me that the idea "intrigues" him.
I also have normal sugar levels; I am NOT diabetic; but my fasting blood insulin level has always been elevated, when tested (initially at 12 UU/ML; ever after no lower than 9 UU/ML; OPTIMAL level is 3 UU/ML or lower).
The insulin hormone is produced in the pancreas, usually in response to the blood sugar level. Its function is to ferry glucose (blood sugar) to cells where it connects to a receptor, unlocking the "door" and allowing the blood sugar to enter the cell. Insulin allows the sugar to be used as #1 an immediate energy source in the cell or #2 stored in the liver and muscle for later use or #3 stored as fat in the fat cells for much later use.
However, the pancreas always overcompensates and produces more insulin than necessary for the glucose. After YEARS of a diet high in carbohydrates, starches and sugar, I feel my pancreas is ALWAYS in overdrive!
Insulin is very caustic – "like lye in the pipes" – and it damages the inside of blood vessels, causing the immune system to kick in and try to repair them. Excess insulin thickens and stiffens smooth muscles; it causes insulin resistant skeletal muscles. By the way, insulin is able to cross the blood-brain barrier – this ability of an unknown culprit in MS is often mentioned in the literature. In my opinion, these characteristics can account for MS symptoms.
Six people I know with MS who have tested their fasting blood insulin levels have also found them to be elevated. Insulin testing was developed by Dr. Rosalyn Yalow and colleague Berson and has been commercially available since only about 1950; it is not yet routinely done, but I think it will soon become as routine as cholesterol testing. At the present time, it must be specifically requested of your physician.
My hypothesis: excess insulin (hyperinsulinemia) plays a major role in MS, as developed in my initial post: http://www.thisisms.com/forum/general-discussion-f1/topic1878.html "Insulin – Could This Be the Key?"