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The Role of Insulin In Your Body

The Role of Insulin In Your Body

Insulin is a hormone, or a tiny chemical messenger, that plays an important role in your health. Your pancreas creates insulin so that your body can put it to good use. But what if you don’t have enough insulin? Or if your body can’t seem to use it properly?

In both cases, we’re here to help. Our team at Jeffery Tun, MD, with offices in Midtown East, Forest Hills, and the Queens neighborhoods in New York City, provides diagnostics and treatments for insulin-related problems to keep you as healthy as possible long term.

Read on to learn more about insulin, including what it does in your body, signs of insulin problems, and what to do when they arise. 

What insulin does in your body

When you eat foods containing carbohydrates, your body turns the glucose — or sugar — into fuel it needs for energy. Your body also relies on stored glucose for energy. Insulin allows glucose from both sources to leave your bloodstream so you can use it and stay energized. 

What happens when you lack insulin

If your body creates too little insulin or can’t use it properly, due to a condition such as diabetes or insulin resistance, glucose can’t get into your cells properly. Left unaddressed, it builds up in your blood, causing hyperglycemia — or high blood sugar. 

Early signs of hyperglycemia include:

Over time, high blood sugar can lead to additional problems, such as unintentional weight loss, skin and vaginal infections, and slow-healing wounds. In the most severe cases, hyperglycemia causes ketoacidosis — a condition marked by dehydration, vomiting, rapid heartbeat, confusion, and even coma. 

What to do about insulin problems

If you’re experiencing signs of hyperglycemia, Dr. Tun and his team can determine whether or not diabetes is at play. Diagnosing diabetes typically only requires a simple blood test. 

If you do have diabetes, your customized treatment plan will include insulin in medication form and lifestyle changes. Improving your eating and exercising habits and limiting the amount of alcohol you drink can help keep your insulin levels and overall health in a positive place.

If you’re dealing with insulin resistance, you may benefit most from weight loss. In addition to healthy lifestyle changes, Dr. Tun can determine if you’re a good candidate for Qsymia®. This prescription medication helps control cravings during the weight loss process, so you can more easily adjust your food intake.

To learn more about insulin or to get the medical care you need, call one of our offices or request an appointment through our website today.

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