Hormones in glucose regulation

The main role of glucose in the body is like fuel in a car: glucose is a source of energy in human beings. When you are in good health the body controls the level of blood glucose and doesn't allow this to become very high or very low. The normal range is 75-115 mg (milligrams) of glucose in every 10 ml of blood. Glucose control is due to the action of hormones.

10 ml is called a 'decilitre' (dcl); blood glucose levels are usually expressed in mg/dcl of blood.

Hormones are signalling substances produced by collections of cells, called endocrine glands, which release their hormones into the blood. Cells are the tiny building blocks of the body, which can only be seen through a microscope. In the human body there are many different types of cell doing many different tasks. Hormones are carried around the body in the blood and on that journey they interact with whichever 'target tissue' is receptive to their signals. There are many different hormones acting throughout the body. Insulin and glucagon are the two most important hormones involved in the control of blood glucose levels. Other examples of hormones are the male and female reproductive hormones: testosterone, progesterone and oestrogen.

Last modified: Friday, 4 July 2014, 10:35 AM