Causes of low insulin

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas, which is very important in your body because it plays a fundamental role in the metabolic process, that of maintaining the proper level of sugar in the blood. In addition, insulin is also responsible for helping you discard carbohydrates or sugars that are absorbed from food, for this reason, when you are eating there is a spike in insulin in your body, which causes blood levels to rise rapidly, While at night, fasting and between meals, when your body needs less insulin, blood levels drop.

However, this situation may change if you have a disorder that is modifying the functioning of your body. That is why if you wonder why I have low insulin , at FastlyHealwe explain some of the causes of this condition.

Pancreatic insufficiency, affects insulin production

The pancreas is a gland that is located in the upper part of the abdomen, specifically behind your stomach, between the spleen and the duodenum. It is a mixed organ, since it exercises exocrine functions, that is, it secretes digestive enzymes that go to your small intestine, and endocrine functions, because it produces hormones such as insulin that pass into the bloodstream.

If you have developed pancreatic insufficiency, it means that the pancreas is not working as it should, that is, it is not producing enzymes or hormones in sufficient quantities for your body or its action is simply totally null. It mostly occurs as a complication if you suffer from any pathology of the pancreas, the most common is acute pancreatitis due to chronic alcoholism , but it can also be the result of an obstruction of the pancreatic duct, due to the presence of celiac disease and even appear after pancreatic surgery . In this way, this disorder can be one of the answers if you wonder why I have low insulin.

Diabetes, lowers insulin level

Having type 1 diabetes is indicative that your body has no insulin secretion from the pancreas due to an autoimmune reaction in which antibodies attack the cells that synthesize and secrete insulin. On the other hand, if you suffer from type 2 diabetes , insulin production decreases as the disease progresses, associated with the deterioration of the organ or due to changes in metabolic requirements.

As a consequence, the uptake and entry of both glucose and fat cells into your muscle is affected, so as there is no glucose mediator, it increases its level in the blood, leading to a series of complications. If this is your case, it is essential that you keep this disorder under control with a doctor, since there are currently a variety of treatments, techniques, products and supplements that will help you have a better quality of life and reduce the effects of low insulin.

Eating little alters the amount of insulin in the body

If you eat little or do very restrictive diets , especially those in which carbohydrate consumption is very low, this may be another reason why you have low insulin. When you do not eat food, for example if you remain fasting, insulin levels decrease, even below normal values, because your body does not feel the need to produce this hormone as there is no glucose to incorporate into the cells. The same happens if you follow strict diets, so if you do not have a diet that includes proteins and carbohydrates, by prolonging it, you can affect the metabolism and the correct levels of hormones in the blood.

Although in general this insulin deficiency returns to normal values when improving the diet, it is essential that you have an excellent eating habit and, if you do not have it, we suggest you visit a specialist to give you the one indicated for your condition, not only to restore your insulin level, but also for the proper functioning of your body.

Low insulin, a symptom of somatostatinoma

Although somatostatinoma cases are very rare , if you have developed this malignant tumor in the pancreas this will cause an alteration in the delta cells and stimulate the accelerated production of the hormone somatostatin. Among the various functions that this hormone has is the inhibition of insulin secretion and maintaining the balance between insulin and glucagon as needed by your body, therefore, having a higher concentration of somatostatin in the blood produces a lower secretion of insulin. and you can present a state of hyperglycemia, being a reason that answers the question of why I have low insulin.

Mostly when this type of condition is detected it may already be in metastasis, in addition the alterations favor the presence of other diseases such as diabetes, steatorrhea, cholelithiasis, gallstones, among others. On the other hand, if this type of cancer is present in the small intestine, it is usually less serious, even asymptomatic, and somatostatin is produced in lesser amounts.


If you have been diagnosed with glucagonoma, it means that you have a tumor located in the pancreas , although it is not usually very frequent. This alteration can generate large changes in the existing levels of different hormones in your body, mainly those generated by the pancreas.

Glucagonoma is generally cancerous, that is, a malignant tumor that worsens over time and can be fatal since this type of cancer severely affects many cells.

Consequences of having low insulin

If you have low insulin levels and you continue like this for a long time or your body does not react to the treatment, you may have some complications, since this hormone is responsible for taking advantage of the nutrients for metabolic reactions, mainly so that the cells capture glucose in blood.

By not having enough insulin, glucose cannot be taken to the cells and produce energy, so your body takes another route and transforms the triglycerides that you have stored in glycerol and fatty acids, used to obtain energy in the different tissues. However, when you have exhausted those reserves you will start to feel weak and tired.

In addition, when your body produces large amounts of fatty acids in the blood, what does not invest in energy will go on to form cholesterol and phospholipids, favoring the accumulation of fat in the arteries and developing atherosclerosis with its consequent complications. Likewise, this excess of fatty acids can generate acetoacetic acid that invades your different tissues, causing you a state of acidosis .

As for glucose, since it cannot be absorbed, over time its amount in the blood increases and then your kidneys intervene to dispose of it through the urine, which makes the amount of urination more abundant until it normalizes in what your glucose levels possible. This can mainly cause you to be tired, hungry, have the need to drink frequently and lose weight.

Likewise, the different functions that insulin plays in your body are altered, such as the uptake of amino acids, an important reaction if you have been injured and a muscle injury occurs, since there is not enough insulin, they cannot be incorporated into the muscle and its recovery is slow.

All these reasons make it extremely important to visit a doctor when a blood test reveals that our insulin levels are low, as it will be necessary to determine the reason for this condition and act as soon as possible.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Why do I have low insulin , we recommend that you enter our Endocrine System category .

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