Food is broken down by our bodies into 3 basic groups: carbohydrates (commonly called carbs), proteins and fats. Carbohydrates are predominantly from plant sources and their basic structure is a helix referred to as a sugar ring or glucose. The body then stores glucose as glycogen in the muscles, liver and spleen for when it is needed. Your body uses glucose (glycogen) as a food source for activities and thinking.
The following foods are predominantly carbohydrates: sugar, lollies, jams, bread, flour, pastas, pastries, rice, fruit, vegetables and alcohol.
A small amount is always circulating in the blood stream and this is referred to as your “blood sugar level” or BSL.
Keeping your blood sugar at a steady range are two hormones called insulin and glucagon.
Glucagon is a hormone released by the pancreas when the level of sugar in the blood drops too low. It causes the liver to convert stored glycogen into glucose and thereby increasing blood sugar levels. The action of glucagon is the opposite to insulin.
Insulin is released when carbohydrates are eaten and glucose starts to enter the blood stream from your gut. The role of insulin is to assist in shuttling the glucose from the blood stream into the cells of the liver, muscles and spleen. Insulin acts like a key to unlock GD4 receptor sites in the cell membrane, allowing absorption of glucose.