Regulation of Blood Sugar level

REGULATION OF BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL

The regulation of blood sugar level By Oyedele Maryam
Dept of Human Nutrition and Dietetics
University of Ibadan

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WHY GLUCOSE REGULATION?

Why the need for the regulation of blood sugar level?

It is important to regulate the blood glucose level because glucose is the only nutrient that is utilized by many tissues for energy. Example of these tissues includes brain tissues, retina and so on. And also the sudden increase or decrease in the glucose level can lead to some deficiencies and diseases in the body.

NORMAL REGULATION OF BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL
Normal blood sugar level is in the range of 80-100mg/dL. In a normal person, blood sugar level is low after waking very early in the morning it ranges between 70-110mg/dL and after a meal, it rises to 100-140mg/dL then the second hour after taking the meal, the sugar level goes back to normal.
The blood sugar level is regulated by the action of the liver and muscle by the influence of insulin, pancreatic hormone and glucagon. among these hormones, insulin is the only antidiabetogenic hormone. While others are diabetogenic hormone.

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ROLE OF LIVER IN THE REGULATION OF BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL
The liver is an important glucose buffer system when blood glucose rises after a meal in the morning, the excess glucose is converted into glycogen and stored in the liver. When blood glucose fall, the glycogen stored in the liver is converted into glucose and released into the blood and this is regulated by insulin and glucagon. Insulin is degraded in the liver by a cellular enzyme called Insulin protease.

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ACTION OF INSULIN IN REGULATION OF BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL
Insulin is the only antidiabetic hormone that is secreted by the body. This is because when a blood sugar increases, the pancreas releases insulin which facilitates the uptake of glucose into the cells. In some tissues like renal tubules and mucous membrane of the intestine, insulin is not required for glucose uptake. This glucose is transported by sodium-glucose symport pump and also by GLUT-4(a glucose transporter).
Glucose which enters the cells is oxidized immediately because of the presence of insulin which helps in the utilization and uptake of glucose.
Also, Insulin prevents the breakdown of glycogen to glucose in muscle cells and in the liver and the process is known as glycogenolysis. And it also prevents the formation of glucose from protein by causing the release of amino acids.

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ACTION OF GLUCAGON IN THE REGULATION OF BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL

Glucagon opposes insulin, it increases the blood sugar level by increasing glycogenolysis, gluconeogenesis in the liver by activating enzymes that convert pyruvate into phosphoenolpyruvate and increasing the transport of amino acids into the liver.
The importance of glucagon in the regulation of blood sugar level is the usefulness of its action when the glucose level in the blood is low (below 80mg/dL.On the other hand, when the sugar level increases, glucagon secretion reduces.

WHEN THERE IS NO REGULATION OF BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL

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When blood sugar is not regulated, what happens?

When the blood sugar is not regulated and there is an increase in the blood sugar level of a person, the person tends to develop a disease known as DIABETES MELLITUS.
Diabetes mellitus is a metabolic disorder caused by High blood sugar level. It is a disease that affects the production or use of Insulin. There are two types of diabetic mellitus
Type 1 diabetes mellitus or juvenile diabetes
Type 2 diabetes mellitus or adult-onset diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes is due to the Deficiency of insulin, this is because of the dysfunction of Beta cells islets of Langerhans. The diabetes is not associated with obesity. It is mostly diagnosed in children or teenagers.
Type 2 diabetes is due to insufficient production of insulin by the pancreas or when the cells are unable to utilize the insulin produced properly.it is diagnosed in adults above the age of 45years.it may be due to genetics, diet or the activity level of the patient.
There is also a type of diabetes known as gestational diabetes, it occurs during pregnancy and goes away after pregnancy.

Symptoms of Diabetes Mellitus

Glucosuria which is characterized by the loss of glucose in urine.
Polyuria, which is characterized by the increase urine output, due to osmotic diuresis caused by high blood sugar
Also, the loss of strength which is as a result of protein depletion due to lack of insulin. It is known as ASTHENIA
It also leads to ACIDOSIS

Another symptom is the increase in water intake also called polydipsia. Excess water loss stimulates the thirst centre in the Hypothalamus.
It also leads to shock due to dehydration caused by the osmotic diuresis.

Complications of diabetes are

Acute complications which are due to hyperglycemia(dangerously elevated blood sugar) or hypoglycemia ( abnormally low blood sugar)
Chronic complications which are characterized by the disease of blood vessels that can damage the feet, eyes, kidney, nerves and heart.

Diagnostic tests for diabetic patients include:
Fast blood sugar
Glycosylated haemoglobin (Hb)
Propandial blood sugar.
Glucose tolerance tests(GTT)

Treatment for diabetes mellitus:

Type 1 diabetes is treated by increasing physical activity(exercise) and by watching the diet of the diabetes patient before oral drugs are administered.
Type 2 diabetes is treated with oral hypoglycemic drugs and the diet of the patient is also watched by giving the patients nutrition that helps increase insulin level.

Did you know that your body needs to eat 5 times a day? It gives the body more energy, helps control blood sugar levels & insulin production. It also reduces body fat, as well as maintain and increase lean muscle mass!

Post Author: Dr Dee

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