Glucose is a form of sugar that results from the digestion of carbohydrates into a chemical that can be readily turned into energy. Glucose is considered the body’s main source of energy. Glucose that is not properly regulated in the bloodstream can lead to serious health issues, including diabetes.
The body usually gets glucose by digesting the sugar and starch that is found in carbohydrates. Various foods are rich in carbohydrates like rice, pasta, potatoes, grains, fruits and some vegetables. Processed sweets are also a source of carbohydrates. The body’s digestive system breaks down these digested starches and sugars and, with the help of bile and other enzymes, turn it into glucose. The glucose is absorbed by the body when it reaches the small intestines and distributed all throughout the body by the bloodstream. The glucose is taken into the muscles and the brain with the help of insulin, which is produced by the pancreas. The glucose is then used as energy for performing different activities and functions of the body and organs.
Glucose is very important because it is the body’s energy source. Since it interacts closely with both the digestive and endocrine systems, it is important that glucose be kept within normal limits in order to ensure that the body continues to be healthy. Excess glucose is stored in the liver in the form of glycogen and it is reabsorbed when the glucose levels in the body drops.
When the body has too much glucose, a condition called hyperglycemia occurs. Glucose levels that are too low can also happen and this is called hypoglycemia.