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Hyperinsulinemia means there is a very high level of insulin in the blood. Over time, high insulin levels may cause high blood pressure (hypertension), weight gain, high cholesterol, and hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis), and may increase a person's risk of heart attack and stroke.

The pancreas, a gland behind the stomach, produces insulin and may make too much when:

  • The body's cells and tissues resist insulin. Because of this, the level of sugar (glucose) in the blood increases. The body releases more insulin from the pancreas to try to lower blood sugar levels.
  • A person is overweight.
  • A person takes a medicine that interferes with insulin.

Losing weight and eating a balanced diet can help decrease hyperinsulinemia and insulin resistance.

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerJennifer Hone, MD - Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
Last RevisedJune 29, 2011

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