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What Does It Mean To Have Low Insulin?

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Prediabetes & Insulin Resistance

What is insulin? Insulin is a hormone made in the pancreas, an organ located behind the stomach. The pancreas contains clusters of cells called islets. Beta cells within the islets make insulin and release it into the blood. Insulin plays a major role in metabolism—the way the body uses digested food for energy. The digestive tract breaks down carbohydrates—sugars and starches found in many foods—into glucose. Glucose is a form of sugar that enters the bloodstream. With the help of insulin, cells throughout the body absorb glucose and use it for energy. Insulin's Role in Blood Glucose Control When blood glucose levels rise after a meal, the pancreas releases insulin into the blood. Insulin and glucose then travel in the blood to cells throughout the body. Insulin helps muscle, fat, and liver cells absorb glucose from the bloodstream, lowering blood glucose levels. Insulin stimulates the liver and muscle tissue to store excess glucose. The stored form of glucose is called glycogen. Insulin also lowers blood glucose levels by reducing glucose production in the liver. In a healthy person, these functions allow blood glucose and insulin levels to remain in the normal range. What Continue reading >>

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Popular Questions

  1. YogaBare

    Hey everyone,
    My Mum just got a set of blood tests back. Her insulin is extremely low (never been like that before). Does anyone know what this indicates?
    Her D3 was also really low - I seem to remember reading somewhere that this could be related? She has had hashimoto's for 10 years, but her insulin has never been out of the ordinary before now.

  2. YogaBare

    This is what I'm understanding so far:
    Very little insulin is produced with Type 1.
    Type 2 produces insulin (sometimes lots, trying to keep blood sugar levels low), though ultimately your pancreas wears out (?)
    Hypoglycemia can be caused by too much insulin being produced, thus suppressing blood sugar too far, by "overshooting" what it's trying to control.
    My first thought with my Mum's insulin levels was diabetes... but I'm also reading that low insulin levels can be very healthy?
    We freaked for a moment that it might be cancer, but it's not a symptom of pancreatic cancer - phew.

  3. SleepyRoots

    What sort of test did she have?
    Insulin reacts to and regulates blood glucose.
    Type 1 Diabetes: low insulin -> toxic blood glucose levels.
    type 2 Diabetes: high insulin -> toxic blood glucose levels.
    Low insulin and low/normal blood glucose is ,well, normal. Especially on a low carb diet if your mum is following one as well.
    Did the doctors make any comments/explanations or is this just something you noticed on the test results?

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