10 Ways You May Be Sabotaging Your Insulin Therapy


For many people with type 2 diabetes, insulin therapy is a must, and there can be serious consequences for those whose insulin isn’t working correctly.

In type 2 diabetes patients, the pancreas doesn’t make enough insulin and the body doesn’t respond well to the insulin it does produce. Injecting insulin can help the body better use glucose (sugar) in the blood or store it for later use, keeping your blood sugar in a healthy range and helping to prevent serious health problems.

“Generally, as the disease progresses, most patients with type 2 diabetes will end up on insulin at some point,” says Jesse Vander Heide, RN, CDCES, a certified diabetes educator at the Oregon Health and Science University in Portland. Your doctor may consider factors such as your current treatment regimen, blood sugar levels, and target glucose goals when advising if insulin therapy is right for you.

If your doctor prescribes insulin to help you manage type 2 diabetes, they will work with you to determine the type of insulin and insulin delivery method that’s best for you. There are different types of insulin available, and they vary in how fast they start to work, when they peak, and how long they last.

People with type 2 diabetes need a combination of two insulin types: basal (long-acting) insulin, which helps control blood glucose levels overnight and between meals, and bolus (rapid-acting) insulin, which helps prevent a rise in blood sugar following meals.

Usually, people take basal insulin once or twice a day at about the same time. Whether that’s in the morning or at night depends largely on what works best for your lifestyle. No matter when you take it, the crucial element is consistency, Heide says.


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