The hormone insulin directs your cells to open up and take in glucose from the blood. With insulin resistance, your cells become desensitized to insulin. They ignore the instructions to open up and take in glucose. Your body keeps producing more insulin to try to get the message heard. But it doesn't work. And your insulin levels rise higher and higher. Those chronically high insulin levels cause rapid weight gain, premature aging, high blood pressure, heart disease, and higher cancer risks. Eventually they lead to type 2 diabetes.