The pancreas has both endocrine and exocrine functions. The pancreas belongs to the body's endocrine system, which secretes and regulates all the hormones in the bloodstream.
The endocrine part of the pancreas is responsible for maintaining levels of glucose in the bloodstream so cells have a consistent supply of energy. To reduce elevated blood glucose levels, the pancreas secretes two hormones: insulin and glucagon.
The exocrine part of the pancreas helps the digestive system process the proteins, fats and carbohydrates in food. The pancreas releases a mixture of enzymes, salt and water, otherwise known as pancreatic juice. This juice is secreted through the pancreatic duct into the duodenum to help break down partially digested food and prepare it for assimilation and absorption.