Insulin Like Growth Factor 1 (IGF-1) Explained: Everything You Should Know
More Testosterone Knowledge: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLt6puIp2CPGW0tIf5L82gvkxDhaSQnME3
This playlist covers things like testosterone and other androgens, DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone), insulin like growth factor (igf-1, igf 1), and human growth hormone (hgh). The emphasis is understanding these hormones and ways to promote them naturally.
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I wanted to take a few minutes to explain Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 to you. This molecule is also called somatostatin C and more often IGF-1 for short. This hormone is widely discussed in the sports world for possible performance enhancement. It also shares the common name insulin with the medication used to treat type 1 diabetes. For these reasons, I thought it would be worth discussing and spending some time reviewing.
Briefly, I will discuss the anatomy, physiology and regulation of IGF-1. IGF-1 secretion is regulated by the release of human growth hormone, which is secreted from the pituitary gland. I have made a detailed video explaining growth hormone and I would encourage you to check that out if you want to know more. The function of IGF-1 and HGH overlap significantly and the distinction between the effects of HGH and IGF-1 are not entirely clear, and the research in this area is ongoing.
IGF-1 is produced and secreted primarily from the liver, although other peripheral tissues, such as bone, produces its own IGF-1. The reason that insulin-like growth factor has the name is that it has an insulin like subunit that binds to insulin receptors, but only has 10% of the potency of regular insulin on glucose regulation.
This is an anabolic hormone; in other words it ‘promotes growth’. While this includes skeletal muscle, it’s certainly not limited to it. It’s worth noting that it is not androgenic, as opposed to testosterone, meaning it doesn’t promote male sex characteristics such as facial hair and deeper voice.
It’s primary effect is growth stimulation. This is a balanced effect which affects all tissues equally, not just skeletal muscle. This occurs because it is released into the bloodstream by the liver, although local production by bones probably is a little more effective locally. Production peaks during puberty where whole body growth is at it’s greatest.
Whole body protein synthesis and inhibition of protein breakdown (proteolysis)
Enhanced bone mineralization
Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia, remember it acts like insulin)
Positive nitrogen balance
Increased kidney filtration
Partial reversal of catabolic activity of glucocorticoids on protein synthesis
Diabetics: increased insulin sensitivity (not approved for this use)