What kind of simple fasting index should be used to estimate insulin sensitivity in humans?

Diabetes Metab. 2003 Jun;29(3):285-8. doi: 10.1016/s1262-3636(07)70038-1.


The hyperinsulinemic euglycemic glucose clamp method is the gold standard for measuring insulin resistance. However it is complex, and simple indexes have been developed. Some of them are based on formulae that calculate the product or the addition of fasting plasma insulin and glucose values whereas others are based on their ratios. We calculated several simple indexes of insulin resistance and compared them to hyperinsulinemic euglycemic clamp data in 111 subjects with a wide range of insulin resistance. We showed that indexes using insulin and glucose ratios in their formulae are poorly correlated with clamp measurements and give false evaluations, particularly in glucose-intolerant and type 2 diabetic subjects. Thus, whatever the glucose profile of study subjects, we suggest the use of a simple index based on the product or the addition of fasting plasma insulin and glucose values instead of their ratios to obtain insulin resistance evaluations close to the hyperinsulinemic euglycemic clamp technique.

MeSH terms

  • Blood Glucose / drug effects
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / blood
  • Fasting / physiology*
  • Glucose Clamp Technique / methods*
  • Glucose Intolerance / blood
  • Humans
  • Insulin / blood*
  • Insulin / pharmacology
  • Reference Values
  • Regression Analysis
  • Reproducibility of Results


  • Blood Glucose
  • Insulin