How Do I Calculate How Much Insulin To Take
In people who do not have diabetes, their bodies release insulin in response to the foods they eat. This is because many foods contain carbohydrates. Some examples include bread, sweets, fruits, and even vegetables.
Your body breaks carbohydrates down into smaller building blocks, like glucose. You need insulin to use this glucose for energy. If your body cannot make or use insulin effectively, youll need to inject it to process your food for energy.
Calculating how much insulin to take is usually based on two considerations:
- Basal insulin dose. A basal insulin dose is an amount that you give yourself daily regardless of the foods you eat.
- Bolus insulin dose. A bolus insulin dose helps correct or anticipate the carbohydrates you eat throughout the day. You will usually correct this with a bolus dose of rapid-acting insulin.
Anticipating a bolus dose is where insulin administration can get tricky. When you give yourself insulin, you are estimating how many units of insulin it will take to process the carbohydrates you eat.
The University of California, San Francisco states that, as a general rule, 1 unit of insulin will process anywhere from 12 to 15 grams of carbohydrates and lower your blood sugar by about 50 milligrams per deciliter .
Since the human body is so complex, not all people will process insulin the same way. Factors like time of day, stress levels, and physical activity can make these numbers more difficult to predict.
Basal Insulin Dose Chart
For this chart, well assume that your premeal blood sugar target is 120 mg/dL and that 1 unit will decrease your blood sugar by 50 points.
If your blood sugar is below 60, do not administer insulin. Instead, you should immediately consume 15 grams of carbohydrates.
If your blood sugar is 300 and above, check your ketones and contact your doctor immediately.
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Do Different Types Of Insulin Have Different Dosage Ranges
Yes. Unlike some other medications used to treat chronic conditions, insulin does not come with a standard dose for everyone, as one size does not fit all. The dose of your insulin will depend on several factors. Insulin therapy should be individualized to your specific needs, and periodic adjustments are often required.
There are several different types of insulin as well as different strengths or concentrations. The most prescribed insulins are referred to as U100 insulin, in which 100 units of insulin are dissolved in 1 milliliter of liquid. Several new insulins with concentrations greater than U100 have recently come to the market. These products were developed for individuals requiring larger doses of insulin in order to reduce the volume injected and the number of injections needed each day.
Toujeo, a once-daily, long-acting basal insulin, contains 300 units/mL . For people who are extremely and therefore need very high doses of insulin, U500 insulin is available.
Insulins are divided into 5 major types, as shown in the table below. They vary by how long they take to begin working, how long they take to reach maximum concentration in your body, and how long they stay in the body. These are defined as onset, peak, and duration:
Onset: The time it takes for the insulin to begin lowering your blood sugar.
Peak: The point at which the insulin reaches its highest concentration in your body.
Duration : How long it takes for the insulin to be cleared from your body.
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Dosage Adjustment Due To Drug Interactions
- Dosage adjustment may be needed when HUMALOG is coadministered with certain drugs .
- Dosage adjustment may be needed when switching from another insulin to HUMALOG .
- Instructions for Mixing with Other Insulins
|HUMALOG U-100 subcutaneous injection route||
|HUMALOG U-100 continuous subcutaneous infusion route||
|HUMALOG U-200 subcutaneous injection route||
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Without a doubt, insulin is lifesaving, and just a day or so without it will require hospitalization and could lead to death for those patients.
If someone has type 1 diabetes or if someone has had damage to their pancreas, these are instances where their body doesnt produce any insulin, Stephanie Redmond, PharmD, CDE, BC-ADM, founder of Diabetes Doctor, tells Verywell. Without a doubt, insulin is lifesaving, and just a day or so without it will require hospitalization and could lead to death for those patients.
Will My Insulin Dosage Be The Same Every Day
It depends. One of the most common regimens used for treating diabetes is basal-bolus regimen, where your doctor prescribes a long-acting insulin once or twice a day and multiple injections of short acting or rapid-acting insulin doses prior to meals. Some people may just need basal insulin.
If you are prescribed basal insulin, your doctor may recommend that you take the same amount each day. The doctor will adjust your dose periodically as needed at your follow-up visits.
If you are prescribed bolus insulin or prandial insulin , the dose may vary on a day-to-day basis. Your doctor may prescribe a certain ratio of insulin to carbohydrates, called an insulin to carb ratio). With this method, your carbohydrate intake can be more flexible, and your mealtime insulin can be adjusted accordingly. Another common option is to take a fixed amount of insulin with each meal, but your diet must be fairly consistent in order to maintain your sugars in a good range with this method.
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You’ll Need To Calculate Some Of Your Insulin Doses
You’ll also need to know some basic things about insulin. For example, 40-50% of the total daily insulin dose is to replace insulin overnight.
Your provider will prescribe an insulin dose regimen for you however, you still need to calculate some of your insulin doses. Your insulin dose regimen provides formulas that allow you to calculate how much bolus insulin to take at meals and snacks, or to correct high blood sugars.
What Is Blood Glucose Monitoring
People use blood glucose monitoring to regularly test glucose levels in the blood.
It is an essential part of effective diabetes control. Many people with diabetes must check several times each day to plan for activities and meals, as well as scheduling doses of medication or insulin.
A person can test their blood glucose levels with a glucometer. They usually come with lancets, or tiny needles, a logbook to record results, and test strips.
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How Many Units Of Insulin Do I Need For 400 Blood Sugar
In a healthy individual, one unit of insulin should cause their blood sugar level to drop 30-50 mg/dL, However, the number of units of insulin needed for people with diabetes depends on factors such as:
- Type of insulin
- Site of injection
- Use of oral diabetes medications
- Comorbid conditions such as kidney failure, untreated hypothyroidism, or which temporarily increase insulin resistance
- Time since your last carb-rich meal
Theoretically, to reduce 400 mg/dL blood sugar to about 100 mg/dL, you would need at least 10 units of insulin. However, depending on your weight and other factors, a higher dose of insulin is almost always required.
How Diabetes Affects Insulin Production
Each diabetes type affects insulin production in a different way. Type 1 diabetes causes damage to the beta cells in your pancreas that make insulin. As a result, your body cant produce enough of this hormone. Type 2 diabetes gradually makes it harder for your beta cells to work, and also makes all the cells of your body less able to pull in and use insulin.
In both types of diabetes, sugar from the foods you eat builds up in your blood. Constantly having high blood sugar damages your blood vessels. Over time, diabetes can cause problems with your nerves, eyes, kidneys, heart, and other organs.
Everyone with type 1 diabetes and some people with type 2 diabetes take a lab-made form of insulin to control their blood sugar.
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When You Take Insulin You Might Be Likely To:
If this happens with you, donât start taking less than your recommended dosage without talking to your doctor. Unchecked high blood sugar can cause other health problems like heart disease, nerve and kidney damage, and eye conditions. Instead, eat lots of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, and try to be active most days.
How To Use The Insulin Calculator
Once your settings have been saved, using the bolus calculator is very straightforward. Enter your blood sugar, and/or carbs, then press the calculate button.
Active insulin is really important, so you may be asked to confirm that you havent forgotten to log any recent shots .
The 5:00 figure in the confirmation example above is based on the Active Insulin Duration setting. If your Active Insulin Duration setting is something different, youll see that instead. Heres how the two buttons work:
- Cancel if you suddenly remember a recent shot you forgot to log, thats no problem. Cancel here and add a new entry for it. In the new entry screen, tap the Time field to adjust the timestamp back to when you took that shot , enter the appropriate details and save it. Now that youve told mySugr about that insulin, you can start your current bolus calculation again and whatever portion of that shot is left will be included in the calculation.
- Continue this confirms you dont have any active insulin on board, and you can continue with the bolus calculation.
To continue, tap the bolus calculator button again to accept the suggested insulin dose. Youll see the units automatically move to the appropriate insulin fields and you can fill in any additional details. Save the entry with the green check or the save button .
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How Much Insulin Is Too Much
Insulin has a narrow therapeutic index, which means there is a fine line between a beneficial dose and a harmful one.
Its possible to overdose on insulin. In a review of insulin overdoses, excess dosages were reported as being anywhere from 26 to 4,800 units . Some of these were accidentally administered, which helps explain why the number is so high.
Its important to know the symptoms of hypoglycemia in case you ever inject too much insulin. These include:
Why Is The Test Performed
Fasting insulin is an important but often overlooked test that can help identify insulin resistance.
Insulin levels are usually out of order long before there are abnormalities in blood sugar levels. Thats why a blood sugar test might come back completely normal even if you are suffering from insulin resistance .
Other than to check for insulin resistance, your doctor may order this test to:
- To help determine the cause of low blood sugar
- Check how your beta cells in the pancreas are working
- To help diagnose an insulin-producing tumor in the pancreas
- To help determine when a person with type 2 diabetes needs to start taking insulin
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Using A Cf To Correct A 2 Hour Post Meal Blood Sugar
Correcting for a high blood sugar 2 hours after eating is using your best estimate!
Things to consider:
- how your insulin works
- the type of meal you ate – high fat carbohydrate meal vs. high fibre, low fat carbohydrate meal
- is it the type of meal that makes your blood sugars higher than usual for a longer than usual time, or
- is it the type of where your blood sugars return to normal within the 2 hours
Remember how your insulin works insulin action or duration of effect.
- starts: 10-15 minutes
How Much Insulin To Take Per Carb
The average person will take about 1 unit of insulin for every 12 to 15 grams of carbohydrates consumed.
There is some variation to this, depending on how sensitive you are to insulin. For some people, this range is 1 unit for every 6 grams of carbohydrates, while for others, its 1 unit for every 30 grams of carbohydrates.
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Example #: Carbohydrate Coverage At A Meal
First, you have to calculate the carbohydrate coverage insulin dose using this formula:
CHO insulin dose = Total grams of CHO in the meal ÷ grams of CHO disposed by 1 unit of insulin .
For Example #1, assume:
- You are going to eat 60 grams of carbohydrate for lunch
- Your Insulin: CHO ratio is 1:10
To get the CHO insulin dose, plug the numbers into the formula:
CHO insulin dose =
- The carbohydrate coverage dose is 6 units of rapid acting insulin.
- The high blood sugar correction dose is 2 units of rapid acting insulin.
Now, add the two doses together to calculate your total meal dose.
Carbohydrate coverage dose + high sugar correction dose = 8 units total meal dose!
The total lunch insulin dose is 8 units of rapid acting insulin.
What Is The 1500 Rule For Blood Sugar
The 1500 rule applies to using fast acting insulin to do corrections. The 1800 rule applied to doing this with Regular. Basal insulin is not intended to bring blood sugar down and we need to use dosages that keep BG at a constant level.
How many units of insulin for 30 grams of carbs?
So lets say you ate 30 grams of carbohydrates. That would give us: 10 units for every 30 grams, therefore a 1:3 ratio. In other words, 1 unit of insulin for every 3 grams of carbs. Now once you know this ratio, you can adapt/modify it for varying amounts of carbohydrates at meals.
How is the correction dose of insulin calculated?
To account for this, correction dose will depend on your personal insulin sensitivity factor . If unknown, this can be estimated as Insulin sensitivity factor = 1800/TDID.
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What Is An Insulin
An insulin-to-carb ratio is the amount of rapid-acting insulin required to essentially cover the number of carbs a person eats or drinks.
While many people tend to focus on calories when discussing food labels and nutritional information, those who live with diabetes and require insulin often look first at the carb counts on nutrition labels.
Everyones I:C ratio varies. This is because everyones diabetes is different. But as an example, an I:C ratio may look something like this:
How Can I Deal With An Insulin Reaction
People who have diabetes should carry at least 15 grams of a fast-acting carbohydrate with them at all times in case of hypoglycemia or an insulin reaction. The following are examples of quick sources of energy that can relieve the symptoms of an insulin reaction:
- Non-diet soda: ½ to ¾ cup.
- Fruit juice: ½ cup.
- Fruit: 2 tablespoons of raisins.
- 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.
Teach your friends, work colleagues, and family members how to treat hypoglycemia, because sometimes you may need their help. Also, keep a supply of glucagon on hand. Glucagon comes in a kit with a powder and a liquid that you must mix together and then inject. It will raise your blood sugar level. If you are unconscious, or you cant eat or drink, another person can give you a shot of glucagon. Talk to your doctor to learn when and how to use glucagon.
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