Does Insulin Make You Gain Weight?

 by Dr. Steve Hruby, D.C.
Reviewed by Dr. Steve Hruby, D.C.

SuperHumans are the toughest, fittest, healthiest and happiest human beings on this planet. My mission is to help you realize your superhuman potential and learn how to live a long, happy and healthy life.

  Fact Checked
 by Rhealyn Tropia, RMT
Reviewed by Rhealyn Tropia, RMT

I’m a content organizer, fact-checker and super mom who ensures content is medically-reviewed, highly accurate, and engaging. My passion is organizing information and ensuring the facts are presented in a manner that is interesting and easy to understand.

does insulin make you gain weight

Insulin is one of the most important hormones in your body. It’s produced by specialized cells in the pancreas and then secreted into your bloodstream. It plays a vital role in transporting glucose from food into cells, where it can be used for energy or stored for later use.

For some people, they require an extra intake of insulin due to certain conditions. But what does this mean for the body? Does insulin make you gain weight?

What Exactly Is Insulin?

Before we discuss the relationship between insulin and weight gain, let’s discuss what insulin is.

Insulin is a hormone that regulates carbohydrate, protein, and fat metabolism in the body. Insulin is released by the beta cells of the pancreas in response to an increase in blood glucose. It signals other cells in the body to absorb glucose from the blood.

If you lack insulin or fail to produce enough of it, then your sugar levels will remain high which can lead to many problems including Diabetes and heart disease.

Why Do Some Diabetics Patient Require Insulin Injections?

Insulin is a hormone that the body needs to properly regulate blood sugar. Diabetes occurs when the body either doesn’t make enough or isn’t able to use insulin efficiently, which can lead to high blood sugar levels.

There are many different types of diabetes, but type 1 diabetes is often characterized by insulin deficiency; people with type 1 diabetes must take insulin in order to stay healthy. In contrast, type 2 diabetes is typically caused by resistance to insulin and often results in high blood sugar levels even without taking insulin injections.

Injections are often the best way for diabetics to manage their disease because they provide an exact dose of insulin at just the right time each day—and it allows patients with type 1 diabetes to manage their disease without worrying about consuming too much food or drink that contains carbohydrates (such as breads or sugary drinks).

How Does Insulin Cause Weight Gain?

Does insulin make you fat? And if so, why does insulin cause weight gain?

glucometer with fruits and measuring tape

Insulin is a hormone that helps to regulate your body’s blood sugar levels by moving excess glucose from the blood into the cells. It does this by signaling the muscle and liver to absorb glucose and store it as glycogen. When you eat food, insulin is released in response to high blood sugar levels and tells your cells to take up glucose from your bloodstream.

Insulin also has a direct effect on fat storage. Insulin stimulates the synthesis of triglycerides (fats) and their deposition into adipose tissue, which is where excess fat is stored. This process is called lipogenesis. In addition, insulin also decreases lipolysis, or the breakdown of fat stores back into triglycerides in adipose tissue so they can be used for energy by other tissues in your body like muscles or organs.

So why does this matter? If you’re constantly eating foods that cause high levels of insulin release (like refined carbohydrates), then it’s likely that those foods are going to cause weight gain due to their effects on fat storage and breakdown as well as increased appetite because of higher levels of leptin production caused by excess insulin release.

Is Insulin Beneficial or Harmful for Weight Loss?

Can diabetes cause weight gain?

What about insulin? Is it harmful or beneficial for weight loss?

The idea that insulin is harmful for weight loss is a common misconception. The truth is, insulin is actually very beneficial in helping you lose weight.

Insulin helps the body to metabolize glucose and other nutrients by signaling other tissues to absorb the glucose and convert it into energy. When you eat a meal, your pancreas produces insulin to help remove the glucose from your bloodstream and make energy available for use by your cells.

When you have high levels of glucose in your blood (like when you are eating), it triggers your pancreas to produce more insulin than usual. Higher levels of insulin lead to higher levels of leptin—a hormone that tells your brain when you are full or satisfied with food consumption.

Thus, when you have high levels of leptin, it signals your brain that you have had enough food and need less energy from food consumption. Therefore, insulin helps lower leptin production so that it will not tell your body when it needs more energy from food consumption than what it is receiving from normal intake patterns, such as through healthy eating habits.

4 Weight Gain Prevention Tips

Here are some tips on how to lose weight while taking insulin, and some weight gain prevention tips.

woman stretches her leg on a blue exercise ball

#1 – Diet

Insulin can make you gain weight if you’re not careful. You can lose weight while taking insulin, but it requires a little more work than just eating less and exercising more. Here are some tips on how to lose weight while taking insulin, and some weight gain prevention tips.

  • Do this before your meal: Eat slowly, chew well and drink water before eating. This will help prevent overeating by making you feel full sooner.
  • Eat fiber-rich foods: Eat fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes. Fiber helps slow down digestion so that blood sugar levels don’t spike too much after meals. For clean eating, you can also follow the Japanese diet plan.
  • Drink juice or a smoothie instead of soda: Drinking juice or smoothies instead of soda is a good way to replace empty calories with healthy ones! If you do drink soda, try drinking diet versions instead of regular ones since they contain fewer calories than regular sodas do (or none at all!).
  • Consider taking an appetite suppressant: Appetite suppressants can help reduce your calorie intake by suppressing hunger so that you eat less! However, they may also cause side effects like fatigue so talk with your doctor before taking any medication that you will be incorporating in your diet. Natural supplements such as Optima restores your gut health and improves how your body absorbs nutrients – which is a big step towards overall wellness.

#2 – Exercise

Regular exercise can help you lose weight while taking insulin. It does this by increasing your metabolism, which is the rate at which your body burns calories.

When you exercise, your body needs to burn more calories than it would normally do if you were just sitting around. This is because your body has to work harder to move and perform the activities that you are doing during your workout.

The more intensive the exercise, the more calories your body will burn. For example, if you were to run on a treadmill for 30 minutes, then it would burn more calories than if you were to ride an elliptical machine for 30 minutes.

Exercising also helps improve muscle tone and strength. In turn, this improves insulin sensitivity so that less insulin is needed to lower blood sugar levels after meals or snacks.

#3 – Understand Your Treatment Options

One of the most important things to understand is that there are many different types of insulin, and each type has its own strengths and weaknesses. It’s important to work with your doctor to find the right one for you, especially when it comes to managing your weight while on insulin.

diabetes monitoring and insulin injection

You also need to know that insulin levels rise when you eat, so if you take a long-acting insulin, it’s important to take those at night so that your blood sugar is stable during the day. There are those that allow you to eat a meal with them at any time of day, because they’re more rapid-acting than other brands.

Your doctor will advise you on how many carbohydrates are safe for eating before taking any insulin; this varies from person to person based on their weight and other factors. You might also be advised to take certain medications before eating carbohydrates in order to lower blood sugar levels before eating them—this is called pre-bolusing.

#4 – Maintain Even and Consistent Blood Sugar Levels

The reason for this is pretty simple: when your blood sugar levels are more balanced out, you’re less likely to experience the highs and lows of fluctuating sugar levels. And if you’re less likely to experience those highs and lows, guess what? You’re less likely to want to eat when they happen.

When you take insulin, it helps your body use glucose more efficiently—and that means it’s not just stored as fat in your body but used up instead. So by keeping your blood sugar levels even and consistent, this is one way we can help prevent those highs and lows from happening in the first place.

No Sugarcoating: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Weight Do You Gain From Insulin?

The amount of weight you gain from insulin depends on your body weight, the type of insulin you use and how much you need to take.

In general, people who have diabetes need to take insulin to help their bodies use glucose (sugar) properly. It’s important to keep your blood sugar levels in a healthy range so that your body can function properly.

When you take insulin, it helps your body absorb glucose from food into your bloodstream. This lowers your blood sugar level and helps control it over time.

If you don’t take enough insulin, it could lead to an increase in your blood sugar level over time. This can cause serious health issues such as blindness or nerve damage if left untreated over time.

Because every person is different when it comes to insulin resistance and sensitivity levels for each person’s unique lifestyle choices (such as diet and exercise), taking too much or too little insulin will affect weight gain differently for everyone.

Why Does Insulin Make Me Gain Weight?

Well, yes and no. Insulin doesn’t make you gain weight—it just helps your body store energy as fat. But it does increase your chances of gaining weight because it encourages your body to store more energy as fat instead of burning it off.

man checking his blood sugar using glucometer

When you eat food, your pancreas releases insulin into your bloodstream to help move the glucose from the carbs into your cells so they can use it for energy or burn it off as fuel. But if there’s too much glucose in your blood—like after eating a bunch of sugar or carbs—your body will try to get rid of that extra glucose by using insulin to store it as fat.

Can You Lose Weight While on Insulin?

It’s a question that has been debated in the diabetes community for decades. The answer is complicated, but there are some things we do know:

  • Insulin does not directly cause weight gain. It’s actually more of a symptom of the disease, rather than the cause of it.
  • Insulin resistance is what causes you to gain weight, and insulin can help you lose weight by reducing this effect.
  • The best way to lose weight while on insulin is to eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly, which will help reduce your blood sugar levels and make sure your body is working properly again.

What Insulin Does Not Cause Weight Gain?

Insulin does not cause weight gain by itself. However, when insulin levels are too high or low, it can have a negative effect on your metabolism, causing weight gain or loss respectively.

A high level of insulin can block the breakdown of fat cells, which leads to a buildup of fat in your system as well as an increase in appetite and hunger cravings.

This can also cause you to crave sweets and starches such as breads and pasta because your body has been conditioned to think that these foods will give it energy instead of storing more fat in your body.


While it can be difficult to lose weight while managing your diabetes, being mindful of the types of food you eat and how much will help you keep your insulin levels balanced.

Though studies have yet to determine if taking insulin actually causes weight gain, it is important to remember that there are many factors in play when considering obesity and adjusting your diet is only one of them.

Before jumping to conclusions, such as thinking that taking insulin will cause weight gain, it is important to take a closer look at all aspects of your lifestyle.

To explore answers to other questions to weight gain triggers such as “does cholesterol cause weight gain?” and “can anxiety cause weight gain?”, check out the linked articles.

Keep visiting this page for more information on how you can live a healthier and longer life. Cheers, SuperHumns!

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