Living with Diabetes

History of Insulin Discovery

What is Insulin?

Insulin is a hormone made by beta cells in the pancreas. It helps the body use or store the blood sugar. The sugar comes from the breakdown of carbohydrates as well as from the liver, which makes sugar in the body. Insulin enables the sugar to enter the cells where it is used to provide energy. It also prevents the production of sugar by some tissues in the body, including liver cells. Therefore, insulin is essential in maintaining blood sugar levels within the normal range.

Insulin is the mainstay treatment for people with Type 1 Diabetes and can also be used in the treatment of some people with Type 2 Diabetes. Insulin should be injected into the fat layer underneath the skin in order to get into the blood. It cannot be taken as a pill because it is a protein and would be broken down by the digestive system similar to the protein in food. 


History of Insulin Discovery: