How Should I Store My Insulin
Like food, insulin doesnt have a forever shelf life. Its recommended that you store any insulin youre not using in the fridge.
However, injecting cold insulin may make the injection feel more painful. Because of this, a best practice is to keep the bottle of insulin youre currently using in a safe place, away from direct heat and sunlight. Insulin kept at room temperature can last about a month.
Do not store insulin in the freezer, and always check the expiration date before using it.
Side effects from injecting or receiving insulin are rare, but can occur in certain cases. The symptoms of mild allergic reactions are swelling, itching, or redness around the injection area. More severe insulin allergies may include nausea and vomiting.
In either case, talk with your doctor if you notice any of these signs.
Hypoglycemia, or blood glucose levels that are too low, can sometimes occur when you take insulin.
Its important to balance the insulin that you give yourself with food or calories. If you exercise longer or harder than usual or dont eat the right amount of calories or carbs, your glucose level can drop too low and trigger low blood sugar. Symptoms of low blood sugar include:
How Should I Throw Away Insulin And Needles
Do not use your insulin if you see clumps or color changes. Cloudy insulin that has small, white, particles that will not mix should be thrown away. Clear insulin that looks cloudy should be thrown away.
- Ask how to throw away insulin you did not use. Your diabetes care team provider will teach you how to do this safely. You may need to mix it with something before you put it in the trash. This helps make sure no one can use it. Directions will depend on the kind of insulin device used to give insulin.
- Check the expiration date on your insulin bottle before each use. Do not use insulin beyond its expiration date.
- Always throw away your used needles in a hard-sided container with a lid. Some examples include a metal coffee can or laundry detergent bottle.
What Are The Drawbacks To Insulin Treatment For Diabetes
The biggest issue with insulin right now is unaffordability. A box of rapid-acting insulin can cost $400 without insurance. As so many people continue to lose their health coverage, its becoming an enormous problem, Dr. Zilbermint says.
Consistently rising costs have led some patients to ration their insulin, which can be dangerous and even deadly. The cost of testing strips is also an issue, and both have led to a black market in testing strips and insulin. Its illegal, says Dr. Zilbermint, but its happening.
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Factors That Modify Insulin Levels
Dietary fiber is associated with lower levels of fasting insulin .
Foods with high glycemic index cause a faster and greater insulin spike after their digestion. For instance, fruit juice has a much greater glycemic index than fruits due to the removal of the fiber .
In a study on over 13,000 non-diabetic men and women, high alcohol intake was associated with low fasting insulin levels .
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Avoiding Injection Bruises And Lumps
Bruising can happen when you catch a tiny blood vessel under the skin where you have injected. It is quite normal for this to happen occasionally when you are injecting regularly and youre not doing anything wrong.
If you are concerned, you could make an appointment with your diabetes specialist nurse who will be able to do a review of your injection technique. In some cases, bleeding and bruising can be reduced by something as simple as using a different sized needle or changing your needle after each injection.
Some people notice hard lumps that can form if you inject in the same place too often. This might be lipohypertrophy , or could be something called cutaneous amyloidosis. These lumps can stop the insulin from working properly, so make sure you rotate where you inject and choose a different spot each time. If you notice any lumps, especially if they’re not going away, speak to your healthcare professional for more advice.
Other side effects from injecting a lot can be itching, rashes and other skin irritations. Changing where you inject helps with this too. You can also get treatments from your local pharmacy that can will help with the irritation.
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Produced In The Pancreas
When you eat, food travels to your stomach and small intestines, where its broken down into nutrients that include glucose. The nutrients are absorbed and distributed via your bloodstream.
The pancreas is a gland located behind your stomach that performs an essential role in the digestion process. It creates enzymes that break down the fat, starches, and sugar in the food. It also secretes insulin and other hormones into your bloodstream.
Insulin is created in the beta cells of the pancreas. Beta cells comprise about 75% of pancreatic hormone cells.
Other hormones produced by the pancreas are:
- glucagon, which alerts your liver to raise your blood sugar if it gets too low
- gastrin, which stimulates the production of gastric acid in your stomach
- amylin, which helps control your appetite
Muscle And Fat Storage
Insulin helps your muscles and fat cells store extra glucose so it doesnt overwhelm your bloodstream.
It signals your muscle and fat tissue cells to stop breaking down glucose to help stabilize your blood sugar level.
The cells then begin creating glycogen, the stored form of glucose. Glycogen provides your body with energy when your blood sugar level drops.
When your liver can hold no more glycogen, insulin triggers your fat cells to take in glucose. Its stored as triglycerides, a type of fat in your blood, that can be used for energy later.
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Regulator Of Endocannabinoid Metabolism
Insulin is a major regulator of endocannabinoid metabolism and insulin treatment has been shown to reduce intracellular ECs, the 2-arachidonoylglycerol and anandamide , which correspond with insulin-sensitive expression changes in enzymes of EC metabolism. In insulin-resistant adipocytes, patterns of insulin-induced enzyme expression is disturbed in a manner consistent with elevated EC synthesis and reduced EC degradation. Findings suggest that insulin-resistant adipocytes fail to regulate EC metabolism and decrease intracellular EC levels in response to insulin stimulation, whereby obese insulin-resistant individuals exhibit increased concentrations of ECs. This dysregulation contributes to excessive visceral fat accumulation and reduced adiponectin release from abdominal adipose tissue, and further to the onset of several cardiometabolic risk factors that are associated with obesity and type 2 diabetes.
Hypoglycemia, also known as “low blood sugar”, is when blood sugar decreases to below normal levels. This may result in a variety of symptoms including clumsiness, trouble talking, confusion, loss of consciousness, seizures or death. A feeling of hunger, sweating, shakiness and weakness may also be present. Symptoms typically come on quickly.
How Do You Choose The Right Syringe For Injecting Insulin
Just as there are different sizes of syringes for administering insulin, there are also varying sizes of insulin needles. Shorter needles usually mean less sting when injecting. The downside is that the shallower the injection is, the longer it takes for the insulin to work. Your doctor will help you find the balance thats best for you.
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What Happens If I Have Too Little Insulin
People with diabetes have problems either making insulin, how that insulin works or both. The main two types of diabetes are type 1 and type 2 diabetes, although there are other more uncommon types.
People with type 1 diabetes produce very little or no insulin at all. This condition is caused when the beta cells that make insulin have been destroyed by antibodies , hence they are unable to produce insulin. With too little insulin, the body can no longer move glucose from the blood into the cells, causing high blood glucose levels. If the glucose level is high enough, excess glucose spills into the urine. This drags extra water into the urine causing more frequent urination and thirst. This leads to dehydration, which can cause confusion. In addition, with too little insulin, the cells cannot take in glucose for energy and other sources of energy are needed to provide this energy. This makes the body tired and can cause weight loss. If this continues, patients can become very ill. This is because the body attempts to make new energy from fat and causes acids to be produced as waste products. Ultimately, this can lead to coma and death if medical attention is not sought. People with type 1 diabetes will need to inject insulin in order to survive.
What Is The Function Of Insulin In The Body
To know the role of insulin in the human body we must first look at a general picture of how metabolism works. For the body to function, various components of food must be absorbed, including the most important, glucose. Glucose is the compound in charge of providing the energy that the body will use to function. This is where the importance of insulin begins, since this hormone is responsible for causing glucose to be processed.
That is, without insulin, the body would not be able to process glucose. Therefore, there would be an excess of glucose or sugar in the bloodstream this is what we call diabetes. When the body is not able to produce insulin, type 1 diabetes is diagnosed, and these patients must begin to take different doses of insulin daily.
There are many types of pharmaceutical insulin, and each is designed to best suit the patients conditions. Not all diabetic patients should use insulin, and not all should use the same amount.
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How Is Insulin Resistance Treated
Since not all factors that contribute to insulin resistance can be treated, such as genetic factors and age, lifestyle modifications are the primary treatment for insulin resistance. Lifestyle modifications include:
- Eating a healthy diet: Your healthcare provider or nutritionist may recommend avoiding eating excessive amounts of carbohydrates and eating less unhealthy fat, sugar, red meats and processed starches. Instead, theyll likely recommend eating a diet of whole foods that includes more vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fish and lean poultry.
- Physical activity: Getting regular amounts of moderate-intensity physical activity helps increase glucose energy usage and improve muscle insulin sensitivity. A single session of moderate-intensity exercise can increase glucose uptake by at least 40%.
- Losing excess weight: Your healthcare provider may recommend trying to lose excess weight to try treating insulin resistance. One study revealed that losing 7% of your excess weight can reduce the onset of Type 2 diabetes by 58%.
Over time, these lifestyle modifications can:
- Increase insulin sensitivity .
- Lower your blood glucose levels.
- Raise HDL cholesterol levels.
You may work with other healthcare providers, such as a nutritionist and endocrinologist, in addition to your regular doctor to come up with an individualized treatment plan that works best for you.
When Good Hormones Go Bad
In its most simple definition, insulin resistance is the decreasing response of your body to insulins effects.
In this state, your body creates more insulin to generate a response until eventually your bodys cells start resisting insulins signals. Eventually, your cells start losing the ability to replenish themselves and the bodys performance begins to drop off.
- Do you have more fat around your midsection than youd like?
- Do you suffer from high blood pressure?
- Do you experience lackluster results in the gym?
- Do you retain water easily?
- Do you have skin tags on your body?
- Do you have patches of darker-colored skin around your eyes, armpits, neck, or other areas?
- Do you have any family history or family members with type I or type II diabetes?
- Do you have any family history with heart disease?
- Do you suffer from fatigue or low energy?
- Do you experience erectile dysfunction?
If you do, then insulin resistance could be a factor. The good news is that it can be reversed.
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What Is Regular Insulin
Insulin is a hormone that works by lowering levels of glucose in the blood. Regular insulin is short-acting and starts to work within 30 minutes after injection, peaks in 2 to 3 hours, and keeps working for up to 8 hours.
Regular insulin is used to improve blood sugar control in adults and children with diabetes mellitus.
Insulin regular may be used for type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
Diabetics Need Insulin Therapy Because They Can’t Make Their Own
Insulin therapy tries to mimic natural insulin secretion what happens automatically in non-diabetics.
The ultimate goal of insulin therapy is to mimic normal insulin levels. Unfortunately, current insulin replacement therapy can only approximate normal insulin levels. Insulin therapy for type 2 diabetes ranges from one injection a day to multiple injections and using an insulin pump . The more frequent the insulin injections, the better the approximation of natural or normal insulin levels. Discuss with your medical provider the insulin regimen that is best for you.
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Why Insulin Can Become Necessary For A Person With Type 2 Diabetes
Starting insulin treatment should not be seen as a setback.
People with type 2 diabetes may require insulin when their meal plan, weight loss, exercise and antidiabetic drugs do not achieve targeted blood glucose levels.
Diabetes is a progressive disease and the body may require insulin injections to compensate for declining insulin production by the pancreas. That is why starting insulin treatment should never be seen as a failure.
Starting insulin treatment should never be seen as a failure.
Treatment with insulin may be added to an antidiabetic medication or completely replace it. Regardless of the treatment, lifestyle habits are essential to managing diabetes.
Many people are reluctant to inject insulin for various reasons:
- Fear of pain or needles
- Impression that this is the last resort
- Fear of hypoglycemic attacks
- Fear of weight gain
- Memories of loved one who had to take insulin
If this is the case, do not hesitate to discuss your concerns with a health care professional. Some of your fears may be due to false beliefs. Learning more about todays insulin treatment will probably allay your fears. For many people, insulin is an effective way to achieve good blood-sugar control, which can prevent or delay certain diabetes complications over the long term.
What Is An Insulin Reaction
If youre going to use rapid-acting insulin, you need to be aware of insulin reactions and how to treat them. Rapid-acting insulin begins to work very quickly. So while you and your doctor are working to find the right dosage of this insulin, you may have some insulin reactions.
Hypoglycemia is the name for a condition in which the level of sugar in your blood is too low. If you use insulin, your blood sugar level can get too low if you exercise more than usual or if you dont eat enough. It also can get too low if you dont eat on time or if you take too much insulin. Most people who take insulin have insulin reactions at some time. Signs of an insulin reaction and hypoglycemia include the following:
- Feeling very tired.
- Being unable to speak or think clearly.
- Losing muscle coordination.
- Suddenly feeling like youre going to pass out.
- Becoming very pale.
- Candy: 5 Lifesavers.
- Glucose tablets: 3 tablets .
If you dont feel better 15 minutes after having a fast-acting carbohydrate, or if monitoring shows that your blood sugar level is still too low, have another 15 grams of a fast-acting carbohydrate.
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How Insulin Treatment Helps Your Blood Sugar
Insulin treatment works in much the same way as natural insulin that the pancreas makes. After you eat, your body breaks down carbohydrates into glucose. That glucose goes into your bloodstream and causes your blood sugar level to rise.
When you take insulin, it helps to move glucose out of your bloodstream and into cells. Your cells use some of that sugar for energy and then store any leftover sugar in your fat, muscles, and liver for later.
Once the sugar moves into your cells, your blood glucose level should go back to normal.
What Are Clinical Trials And Are They Right For You
Clinical trials are part of clinical research and at the heart of all medical advances. Clinical trials look at new ways to prevent, detect, or treat disease. Researchers also use clinical trials to look at other aspects of care, such as improving the quality of life for people with chronic illnesses. Find out if clinical trials are right for you.
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Concerns Regarding Insulin Safety Have Been Long
The case of cardiovascular disease has been longer and more convoluted. Once again, insulin had been implicated because of its potential to act as a growth factor and thereby promoting and/or enhancing the development of atheroma in the circulation. This hypothesis seemed to be supported by observations from epidemiological studies suggesting an association between hyperinsulinaemia and cardiovascular mortality. Subsequently, a meta-analysis of data from eleven different studies in non-diabetic men and women concluded that hyperinsulinaemia was significantly associated with cardiovascular mortality. However, this does not imply causality since the fasting insulinaemia seen in these studies may have been a consequence of insulin resistance, and hence an innocent surrogate.
An RCT was clearly needed the United Kingdom Prospective Diabetes Study . In the seminal publication of 1998, the introduction clearly stated that there is concern that sulphonylureas may increase cardiovascular mortality in patients with type 2 diabetes and that high insulin concentrations may enhance atheroma formation. UKPDS conclusively demonstrated no such increase and, almost, showed a benefit from tight control using insulin and the sulphonylureas. Now the hypothesis had changed leading to attempts to demonstrate a beneficial impact of tight glycaemic control on cardiovascular outcomes ultimately this led to the controversy surrounding the ACCORD study.