Insulin for type 2 diabetes – when is it necessary?

Insulin for type 2 diabetics

Taking insulin for type 2 diabetes is not a common occurrence. Other medication such as Metformin is generally used to manage type 2 diabetes. It is even possible for type 2 diabetics to not take medications at all.

If you are on insulin for type 2 diabetes it is a sign that your blood sugar levels are not responding to your lifestyle very well. There are many factors at play here including your diet, weight, emotional or physical stress and exercise levels. Broadly speaking, if you can look after your mind and body then you are well on your way to managing your diabetes, which will mean you can live a normal, happy, healthy life.

insulin for type 2 diabetes

What the stats say

According to the latest CDC research 90% of all people with diabetes have type 2 diabetes. 57% of type 2 diabetics take oral medication such as Metformin to manage their condition. 14% use insulin, while 13% use insulin coupled with oral medication. There are 16% of type 2 diabetics who manage their diabetes with exercise and diet alone. Ideally you want to get yourself into this 16% of people. To learn how to join this group of people click here.

Insulin resistance

When you have type 2 diabetes it means that your pancreas is still producing insulin but it is not utilising it at an optimal rate. This condition is known as insulin resistance. If you are not managing your life via proper weight loss goals through proper diet and exercise then your body will be resisting insulin, which means it will struggle to convert glucose into energy which leaves your blood sugar levels too high.

Taking insulin does not mean that you have failed to manage your condition

There are many type 2 diabetics out there that have a good diet and exercise regularly but they still need insulin therapy.  There are many factors at play here including your age, your weight, your emotional stress levels etc. Often it means that oral medication can no longer manage your blood sugar levels effectively.

Often taking insulin for type 2 diabetes is the only option to combat the disease. This can happen over time as your condition progresses and worsens. Often the first way to combat type 2 diabetes is via oral medication such as Metformin. Please see my blog  post about  Metformin here.Type 2 diabetes oral medication

New research

New research suggests that lowering triglycerides (which is a type of fat) in the bloodstream can improve diabetic sensitivity to insulin over the long term. There is a new drug called Volanesorsen which has seen type 2 diabetics lower their triglycerides and also their insulin sensitivity. This is very early research. Keep your eyes on this blog for a post about this new experimental drug. In the mean time you can learn more about triglycerides by reading this blog post.

Insulin type 2 diabetesTaking insulin may only be short term

There are some factors which may lead to a type 2 diabetic needing to take insulin on a short term basis. For example someone who falls pregnant may need to use insulin for the term of the pregnancy. Often after surgery a patient will require insulin shots whilst the body recovers. Other medical conditions can also see a short term use of insulin for a type 2 diabetic. Often with proper diet, weight loss and exercise insulin for type 2 diabetes is no longer required.

Reasons to take insulin for type 2 diabetes

  • It quickly lowers your blood sugar levels much quicker than diet and exercise and oral medication.
  • It can have fewer side effects than other medications outside of hypoglycemia
  • According to research insulin is a cheaper alternative to buy than other medications.

Do insulin injections hurt?

Insulin for type 2 diabeticsThe simple answer to that question is no they don’t. The technology and needles are so good these days that you barely even feel them. The needles used today are so fine that they are next to completely painless

Taking insulin for type 2 diabetes is different than taking it for type 1. You may only need one shot a day of long acting insulin to control your blood sugar levels.  It will initially need some close monitoring on your part to work out what is best. If your sugar levels are too high after meals you may need to take insulin shots before meals.

Don’t wait if you need insulin

The dangers of diabetes are clear and always present. You do not ever want to see the complications of this chronic disease take effect. If you are not getting your blood sugar levels under control with proper diet, exercise and other medication and your doctor recommends you start taking insulin, you should.  Starting insulin therapy sooner rather than later will help you avoid long term complications.

The dangers of hypoglycaemia

Insulin therapy can be dangerous if you fail to follow the guidelines for managing your blood sugar levels. There are heartbreaking stories of people who have over injected themselves and died as a result. I can recall one story of a young diabetic who died by over injecting himself and running away from the daycare centre he was at. The good news for type 2 diabetics taking insulin is that the risks of hypoglycemia is lower than it is for insulin dependent or type 1 diabetics. It is important to recognise the symptoms of hypoglycemia such as shaky, sweating, confusion etc and how to deal with them should they arise. Please see my blog post on low blood sugar symptoms here.

Conclusion

You need to work very closely with your doctor and or diabetes expert to determine your best cause of action to managing your type 2 diabetes. Sometimes insulin therapy may be the best way forward. You should not see this as a failure to manage your condition as there are many factors at play here including your emotional well being.

Please see my other blog post about curing your type 2 diabetes. This is an eBook that has been written by a 5 star chef  and contains some outstanding recipes that taste great. This chef has also cured his type 2 diabetes so it is well worth the read.

If you take insulin for type 2 diabetes or if you have read the above Ebook I would love to hear from you…

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4 Comments

  1. Brenna

    Honestly, I had no idea that 90% of the folks with diabetes had type 2 diabetes. Even thought I do not have either I have had friends that have had to deal with taking insulin on a regular basis. I’m sure that they would love to know that it’s possible to manage and stop taking insulin. You’re also very encouraging for those still on it!

    Reply
    1. Ben (Post author)

      Thanks Brenna. Yes generally people who take insulin are type 1 diabetics but that is not a hard and fast rule. Diet and exercise as well as managing your weight is the best way to ensure a long, healthy life.

      Reply
  2. thebrother

    Thank you for your enlightening site about healthy blood sugars. I am one of the 90%. It is very hard to accept and believe, still after 15 years. I am under control through meds. But I want to be in that 16% who are free through diet & exercise alone. Your .com title is a bit long but you have a very well put together site which I must share with others.

    Reply
    1. Ben (Post author)

      Thanks The brother. I am glad to hear that you are managing it all well. It would be ideal to get off the meds but even for diabetics who live the best, healthiest lifestyle it is not always possible. The recipes in the eBook will be as close as you get to being perfect in the kitchen. It has helped many people get off the meds in the past. Good luck and thanks for stopping by!

      Reply

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