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What Is Glucose and How Does It Work?

Glucose plays a vital role in how your body functions. Having too much glucose or too little can be detrimental to your health.

What Is Glucose?

Glucose is blood sugar. It is what keeps your body working in top order. If your body’s levels are normal, you don’t even notice it. However, if it becomes too high or gets too low, you will see its effect on normal body functions. Tandem Diabetes Care has several resources designed to make it easy for you to understand it and diabetes.

In simpler terms, what is glucose exactly? It is a simple carbohydrate. It only has one sugar. This is similar to fructose, galactose, and ribose.

Your body prefers to use it as fuel. Vegetables, dairy products, bread, and grains give you. It is the energy from this that keeps you alive and moving. As with everything else in life, it needs to be kept in moderation to be beneficial.

How Your Body Processes Glucose?

Your body processes glucose several times throughout the day. As soon as you eat something, your body starts the glucose processing cycle. Your pancreas produces enzymes to break down the food you eat. It produces insulin, which is a crucial part of how your body deals with it. When you eat something, your body tells the pancreas that it needs more insulin to deal with the rising blood sugar level.

Unfortunately, some people’s pancreas doesn’t work as it should. This can lead to diabetes. If a person’s pancreas is not working correctly, they may need insulin injections to help their body adequately process and regulate.

On the other hand, a person with diabetes may become insulin resistant. This means that their body does not accept insulin. Their liver doesn’t recognize the insulin in their body. As a result, their body starts making excessive amounts of it.

Your liver plays a vital role in controlling sugar. It tells your body when to store and when to release glucose based on its energy needs.

If your body is not making enough insulin, it will not release free fatty acids. This can cause you to have a condition called ketoacidosis.

How Is Glucose Tested?

Testing yourself is important, especially if you have been diagnosed with diabetes. One way to test your glucose is with a simple blood test. You prick your finger and drop a little bit of blood onto a strip test. Your blood sugar levels are measured, and you get the results in just a few seconds.

If your blood sugar levels are high, it could be a sign that you have just eaten a heavy meal, you lack physical activity, you are dealing with an illness, you are under stress, or you need your diabetes medication.

If your levels are high, insulin might bring them down to a normal range. In less severe instances, physical activity can lower glucose levels.

Take Glucose Levels Seriously

As with most health conditions, these issues are best addressed before they become too serious. Healthy glucose levels are crucial to having your body work its best.