Insulin Resistance Insulin Resistance
The Free Medical Dictionary by Farlex

INSULIN RESISTANCE—- is not a disease as such but rather a state or condition in which a person’s body tissues have a lowered level of response to insulin, a hormone secreted by the pancreas that helps to regulate the level of glucose (sugar) in the body. As a result, the person’s body produces larger quantities of insulin to maintain normal levels of glucose in the blood. There is considerable individual variation in sensitivity to insulin within the general population, with the most insulin-sensitive persons being as much as six times as sensitive to the hormone as those identified as most resistant. Some doctors use an arbitrary number, defining insulin resistance as a need for 200 or more units of insulin per day to control blood sugar levels. Various researchers have estimated that 3-16 percent of the general population in the United States and Canada is insulin-resistant; another figure that is sometimes given is 70-80 million Americans. INSULIN RESISTANCE—- can be thought of as a set of metabolic dysfunctions associated with or contributing to a range of serious health problems. These disorders include type 2 diabetes (formerly called adult-onset or non-insulin-dependent diabetes), the metabolic syndrome (formerly known as syndrome X), obesity, and polycystic ovary syndrome. Some doctors prefer the term “insulin resistance syndrome” to “metabolic syndrome.”