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Insulin is a very important hormone in the human body. During digestion, most of the carbohydrates that we eat are broken down into glucose molecules. Insulin is released by the pancreas when the glucose starts to enter the blood stream. This results in the liver, muscles and fat cells absorbing glucose and storing it as glycogen. The glycogen is used as the source of energy by the cells. In the absence of insulin, excess glucose results in a very high concentration of glucose in the blood but none of this can be used by the cells of the body as a power source. Fat is then used by the cells to generate some energy but the process is not feasible and soon the body is unable to function due to a lack of energy. The extremely high blood glucose levels also start to damage all the organs of the body.
Insulin is made up of 51 amino acids and has a molecular mass of 5080 Dalton. Insulin is a protein and is digested if ingested orally. This makes it essential for those who need artificial insulin to take it as an injection. An excess amount of insulin can cause a sharp decrease in the blood glucose levels and trigger a condition called hypoglycemia that can cause death if proper measures are not taken immediately.
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