Insulin is a hormone; a chemical messenger produced in one part of the body to have an action on another. It is a protein responsible for regulating blood glucose levels as part of metabolism.
The body manufactures insulin in the pancreas, and the hormone is secreted by its beta cells, primarily in response to glucose.1
The beta cells of the pancreas are perfectly designed “fuel sensors” stimulated by glucose.2
As glucose levels rise in the plasma of the blood, uptake and metabolism by the pancreas beta cells are enhanced, leading to insulin secretion.
- Insulin has two modes of action on the body – an excitatory one and an inhibitory one:3
- Insulin stimulates glucose uptake and lipid synthesis
It inhibits the breakdown of lipids, proteins and glycogen, and inhibits the glucose pathway (gluconeogenesis) and production of ketone bodies (ketogenesis).