Insulin is actually a peptide hormone. It is secreted by the pancreas and is responsible for regulating the metabolism of carbohydrates as well as fat in the body. Besides, it promotes protein synthesis and the use of glucose. Biosynthetic “human” insulin is intended for use by people who have insulin disorders including diabetes mellitus, asPCOS, Insulinoma, and metabolic syndrome, and it is taken by way of injection.
Reasons for Using Insulin
Insulin is believed to have an anabolic effect in the body as it helps to increase the volume of each cell. In bodybuilding, it is used to enhance muscle bulk since it stimulates the formation of glycogen that in turn feeds the muscles during training. Lastly, insulin also works towards preventing muscle protein breakdown, thus it helps a person to bulk up with muscle as well. Insulin plays an important role and without its help, it would not be possible to get all the protein in your post-workout shake delivered.
In the past, any time insulin was discussed it was only in reference to diabetes. As a hormone, insulin is responsible for driving glucose out of the blood stream and into the cells. The loss of the ability to regulate blood glucose levels usually leads to diabetes. However, insulin is much more than a hormone that just regulates glucose. Firstly, it is extremely anabolic, meaning it is crucial for building muscle. Secondly, it has a downside to it as it has the potential to increase fat storage. The trick lies in learning how to increase insulin in order to optimally recover from exercises and simultaneously lessen it to stay lean.
Insulin and Muscle
As a matter of fact, insulin is a functional protein, just like growth hormone unlike other proteins that are physical building blocks of muscle. But just like all the other proteins, it is a chain of amino acids strung together. However, this protein chain is folded in a way that makes it function more like a signaling mechanism than a building block.
Once it leaves the pancreas, insulin enters into the blood stream and is transported to several tissues. Muscle cells or fibers have a lining that comprises of insulin receptors resembling a docking station. The moment it anchors onto the receptor, it sends a signal to the muscle cell to “open up its gates”, thus enabling glucose, amino acids, and creatine to make their entrance into the muscles. Actually, this process is the main reason why insulin is very crucial for building muscle.
Apart from that, the other reason is that insulin activates biochemical reactions in the muscle the moment it docks onto the muscle cells. This increases protein synthesis, the processes of building muscle from the amino acids which are entering into the muscle cells. Insulin also lessens muscle breakdown, and this further increases muscle growth.
Insulin is important in building muscle. It helps in muscle development, though indirectly, by making the blood vessels to relax and open, and this allows increased blood flow to the muscles. By doing this, insulin may help transport more nutrients such as glucose and amino acids to the muscles. This explains why on contest day; bodybuilders can be seen pounding simple carbs. An equivalent spike in insulin drives the carbs into the muscles in order to keep them full and increases vascularity.