How Does Insulin Regulate Blood Sugar Levels?

Written by claudette pendleton
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How Does Insulin Regulate Blood Sugar Levels?
(www.clarian.org, www.nlm.nih.gov, www.ptfriendly.com)

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How is Sugar Diabetes Determined and Diagnosed?

The human body's blood glucose level is to be sustained between 70 mg/dl and 110 mg/dl. Mg/dl represents the milligrams of glucose within 100 millilitres of blood. If a person's blood sugar (glucose) level is below 70 mg/dl, it is called hypoglycaemia. If the blood glucose level is above 110 mg/dl, it is at a normal level after eating inside two or three hours. When fasting, a patient's blood glucose level should stay between 70 and 110 mg/dl. Blood glucose should stay below 180 mg/dl even after a person has eaten food. If a person's blood glucose level above 180 is hyperglycaemia; a condition that signifies having too much glucose sugar in the blood. If blood glucose results are above 200 mg/dl after taking a glucose tolerance test, twice, by drinking a sugar-water drink, the patient is diagnosed to have diabetes.

Eating food and insulin release regulate gluose levels
Eating food and insulin release regulate gluose levels

What Is Insulin?

Insulin is a hormone that is secreted by islet cells located within the pancreas. Glucagon is also another hormone that is secreted from the pancreas. Both hormones are produced in response to blood sugar levels; however, they are emitted in different manners. Depending on the level of glucose is in the blood, either insulin or glucagon will be released to regulate blood sugar in the human body. This is why insulin and glucagon are also called the pancreatic endocrine hormones. Insulin and glucagon keep the body's blood glucose level at a desired healthy level.

The pancreas and the production of insulin and glucagon
The pancreas and the production of insulin and glucagon

How Does Insulin Regulate Blood Sugar Levels?

Insulin is secreted when blood glucose rises after eating a meal. Insulin assists in regulating blood sugar by transporting the glucose into muscle cells and other tissues as well as to the liver. Glucose fuels the muscles, red blood cells and fat tissues. In the liver, it is stored as glycogen for use in the future. Blood sugar transported to fat tissues is stored as fat. When insulin is secreted, the cells absorb the glucose from the blood. The high blood glucose is then lowered to a normal range. Glucagon, however, is secreted by alpha cells from the pancreatic islets. If blood glucose is high, glucagon is not secreted. However, when blood glucose is low, between meals or while exercising, glucagon is secreted. Glucagon also affects many cells in the body; however, the liver is mostly affected. The liver releases the glucose that's been stored in cells into the bloodstream, and glucose is increased as needed.

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