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Time Gap Between Insulin And Food

When Do I Take Rapid

How insulin works

You should inject rapid-acting insulin no more than 15 minutes before you eat. Your doctor will tell you how much insulin to inject. Remember, you should not wait more than 15 minutes to eat after you take this insulin shot.

Rapid-acting insulin can be more convenient to take than regular insulin. With regular insulin, you inject the insulin and then wait 30 to 60 minutes before eating. Many people find it hard to time their meals around regular insulin injections. Sometimes they end up eating too soon or too late. Then they dont achieve the best blood sugar control. Since rapid-acting insulin is taken so close to mealtime, it may help you control your blood sugar more effectively.

Dont Go More Than 5 To 6 Waking Hours Without Food

As a general rule, try to minimize any long gaps during the day without fuel, Sheth says, noting that 5 to 6 hours between meals is the absolute max most people with diabetes should push it.

Some people may even need to eat every 3 to 4 hours for optimal blood sugar management, adds Phelps.

Keep in mind that how often you need to eat is going to be a determining factor in your ideal snacking strategy.

Insulin Sensitivity And Your Dose

You may hear your healthcare professional talk about insulin sensitivity. This is how well your body is using insulin to get your blood sugar levels down. People with high sensitivity need less insulin than those with low sensitivity.

Your healthcare professional can test you for insulin sensitivity, and this will help them decide what dose of insulin you will need, and if insulin of you need it at all.

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When Should One Normally Take Insulin In A Day

Insulin must be taken before meals, as when you are eating, the blood sugar levels in your body tend to rise naturally. Injecting insulin before this spike in blood sugar can happen helps to manage the rise in sugar levels.

Mealtime Insulins are the ones that are taken immediately before a meal and are fast-acting ones.

Regular insulin should be injected before 15 to 30 minutes of a meal. There are various insulin injections available whose time intervals depend on the strength of it. Various brands are made to work comparatively quickly. These insulin injections must be taken less than 15 minutes before a meal.

It is generally advised and recommended by doctors to administer insulin in the body before meals.

What to do if you forgot your daily insulin before food? Can it be taken afterward?

Now, lets say, you missed to take your insulin before your food, it is not very late to correct this mishap. Suppose insulin is introduced to the body within specified time limits after meals. In that case, it can still work the same way and protect your metabolism and blood sugar levels from adverse situations.

Thus, the question arises, that if you have not taken your daily insulin before a meal, can it be taken after you have had your food?

Let us divide the way insulin can be taken post-meal, depending on the varieties of insulin available and might be the ones you use.

Know Your Insulins And Their Timing

Pin by cassim paruk on Insulin Reistance

A good way to improve glucose levels is to track the peaks and drops in your glucose and relate how the peak and action times of your insulins correspond to low or high patterns in your glucose. Identify your glucose patterns , and work to understand when each of your insulins is active. This allows you to adjust your insulin doses or food choices to stop unwanted ups and downs in your readings.

The table below shows the start, peak, and end times for various insulins.

When Does My Insulin Peak and How Long Does It Last?

Action Times for Insulins
covers meals and lowers high BGs
Regular covers meals and lowers high BGs
very flat, long-acting background insulin action

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Tips For Insulin Devices

Each insulin device is different. This page lists some basic tips about insulin devices. Talk to your health care provider to learn everything you should know about your insulin device.

General Tips

  • Never share insulin needles or devices.
  • Ask your doctor or nurse to show you how to inject your insulin.
  • Always wash your hands before you inject your insulin.
  • Do not inject your insulin in the exact same spot on your body each time.
  • The skin may get thick or thin if you use the same spot.
  • Inject in the same general area of your body.
  • Do not use your insulin if it looks cloudy or looks like something is floating in it. Take it back to the drug store for a new one.
  • Do not use insulin needles , pens, and injectors after the expiration date printed on the label or on the box.
  • How to Throw Away Used Devices

    • Follow the directions on when to throw away the needles, pens or injectors.
    • You should throw away your used needles in a hard container like an empty laundry detergent bottle or a metal coffee can.
    • Make sure the needles cannot poke through the container.
    • Put a label on the container to warn people that it is dangerous.
    • Keep the container where children cannot get to it.
    • Always put a lid or top on the container.

    You Can Control Your Diabetes

    Different Eating Habits Of Diabetic Pet

    • Pets can dive into their chow with such gusto you are lucky to get your hand away before setting down the food bowl.
    • Some diabetic pets are more finicky about if and how much they will eat.
    • A pet can have erratic blood glucose numbers and are more difficult to regulate.
    • Hard to manage pets are so difficult that their humans are forced to check a blood glucose every time they fed the pet and adjust the insulin dose based on the appetite.
    • The easiest to manage pets are very regular and predictable regarding blood glucose.
    • No two diabetic pets are the same.

    If I had my way, diabetic dogs and cats would be fed twice a day with their insulin injections. That sounds all very good on paper, but the truth of the matter is that our pets may have a different opinions. Cats especially are notorious for nibbling throughout the day. I joke that in my home pets get the same authority as humans that it is a democracy in the Sutton household. In all honesty, however, the truth is that the cats wear the pants in my family. I have never had a dog boss me around so much as my cats do. If I were to feed my cats a mere two times daily, there would be no end to them telling me about it. My particularly food-motivated cat sometimes looks at the empty food bowl and then looks at me. Im certain she is thinking, Human, are you daft?

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    What Is An Important Complication Of Taking Insulin

    If the amount of insulin taken is more or if the person has skipped meals after taking insulin, it can result in hypoglycemia. Hypoglycemia presents the below symptoms:

    Query:Hi doctor,My mother has been suffering from diabetes for three years. She is 61 years old and weighs 40 kg. She was on Gemer-1. Early morning around 5 AM, she often complains of excessive sweating and weakness. Sweating stops after taking tea, biscuit or sugar. She has stopped taking medication for… Read Full »

    Query:Hello doctor,I have been having issues with on and off periods for nearly four years now. When my periods started, they were normal, neither heavy nor light, and nothing unusual. But, I started missing my cycle for about six months, and then I would come back completely normal. My last episode of m… Read Full »

    Query:Hello doctor,My mother was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Her first blood sugar test report was at 437. Now, after three months, the fasting level is 86. Last month fasting was 105 and post-prandial was 120. She is taking half a tablet of Glimepiride 2 mg and Metformin 1000 mg both twice a day. Sh… Read Full »

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    Diabetes Patients Can Eat Immediately After Taking Insulin

    Get rid of Insulin Resistance Once And For All

    People with type 2 diabetes no longer have to wait to eat after taking insulin.

    People with type 2 diabetes are sometimes told to wait after using insulin for the drug to work its way into the body before they can begin eating, but a new study from Germany indicates that it is not necessary to wait.

    In a group of about 100 diabetics, researchers found that blood sugar levels remained steady regardless of whether or not participants left a 20 to 30-minute gap between using insulin and eating a meal. The diabetics overwhelmingly preferred being able to eat right away, too.

    The result of the study can lead to better adherence and satisfaction.

    Injectable insulin is available for diabetics in a newer fast-acting form, but its expensive and many still use human insulin, which takes some time to become active in the body. So doctors often recommend waiting to eat after using human insulin to prevent blood sugar spikes.

    Not all experts think waiting is necessary, though, according to the researchers led by Nicolle Mueller of Universitätsklinikum Jena. To see what difference it makes, Mueller and her colleagues randomized type 2 diabetics into two groups.

    Using a blood test that measures average glucose levels over time, the researchers found that all the participants had generally higher than ideal blood sugar levels but the difference in those levels between periods when they waited or didnt wait to eat after insulin injections was a negligible 0.08 percent.

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    Benefits Of Mealtime Insulin

    The biggest benefit of taking mealtime insulin on top of a long-acting or intermediate regimen is that it allows you to closely match how your own body would naturally release insulin if it was able to do so.

    Another advantage is that it allows your mealtimes to be flexible. As long as you remember to take your mealtime insulin 15 to 20 minutes before your meal or snack, you can eat your meals whenever youd like.

    Many doctors will start you on long-acting insulin at first. But sometimes long-acting insulin isnt enough to keep your blood glucose at your target level throughout the day.

    When you eat a meal, glucose levels in the blood can rise rapidly. This spike in blood glucose may be too high for long-acting insulin to control. This is when a doctor may want to add mealtime insulin to your long-acting therapy or prescribe combination insulin.

    A doctor will work with you to figure out if you need mealtime insulin. Theyll have you take note of how much your blood glucose fluctuates throughout the day. Theyll also ask about your lifestyle and eating habits.

    A doctor will likely recommend that you add mealtime insulin to your long-acting insulin if your glucose levels are still too high after eating a meal.

    Youll continue to take your long-acting insulin as prescribed by a doctor. But youll also take the mealtime insulin right before you eat your meals .

    Factors That Speed Insulin Absorption

    Variation in insulin absorption can cause changes in blood glucose levels. Insulin absorption is increased by:

    • injecting into an exercised area such as the thighs or arms
    • high temperatures due to a hot shower, bath, hot water bottle, spa or sauna
    • massaging the area around the injection site
    • injecting into muscle this causes the insulin to be absorbed more quickly and could cause blood glucose levels to drop too low.

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    Best Times To Take Mealtime Insulin

    When you begin taking insulin, a doctor might check in with you often. They may have you tweak the amount you take or the time you take it based on the results of blood tests. You may need to fine-tune your dose and schedule until you find the ones that work best.

    Research shows that the best time to take mealtime insulin is 15 to 20 minutes before you eat a meal. Taking mealtime insulin after your meals may put you at a greater risk of low blood glucose, or hypoglycemia.

    However, dont panic if you forget to take your insulin before your meal.Instead, take it at the end of the meal and keep an eye on your blood glucose.

    If you forget to take your insulin and its already time for another meal, your blood glucose level will probably be higher than it normally is before a meal. If this happens, measure your blood glucose and then adjust for the meal, adding a correction dose to cover the higher glucose level. Talk with a doctor or a certified diabetes educator about how to use a correction dose to manage elevated blood sugars when you miss a dose.

    If you forget to take your mealtime insulin often, talk with a doctor or certified diabetes educator. They may prescribe a different type of insulin for you.

    Pilot Program Cuts Hospital Food

    Raising a Child with Diabetes: Going to School

    Miriam E. Tucker

    May 02, 2013

    PHOENIX A new pilot inpatient program in which nurses were informed of the exact time of food delivery to patients cut in half the period between insulin dosing and meal consumption, without increasing hypoglycemia.

    The results of a prospective controlled trial evaluating the program were presented here at the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists 2013 Scientific & Clinical Congress by Shwetha Mallikarjuna, MD, an endocrinology fellow at Southern Illinois University , Springfield.

    “Multiple studies have demonstrated basal/bolus insulin superior to sliding-scale insulin for the management of hospitalized patients with diabetes mellitus. However, failure to coordinate meals and administration of prandial insulin may limit the effectiveness of basal/bolus insulin regimens,” Dr. Mallikarjuna said at a press briefing.

    “Our study highlights what we feel is likely an underappreciated problem and illustrates that a fairly simple effort to address it can lead to significant improvement in the timing of mealtime insulin,” the study’s senior investigator, Michael Jakoby, MD, from the Center for Diabetes and Metabolic Health at SIU School of Medicine, told Medscape Medical News.

    InsulinMealtime Gap Cut in Half Without Hypoglycemia

    The differences between the 2 groups were significant at lunch and dinner , but not breakfast .

    Implementation Could Be Key for Quality Measures

    Send comments and news tips to .

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    Dont Switch Your Insulin Dose Or Stop Taking It Without Seeing Your Doctor First

    Switching your insulin medication or changing the dose without asking a doctor can put you at risk for serious side effects and complications.

    If you have type 2 diabetes, you should be seeing your doctor or endocrinologist for a checkup roughly every 3 to 4 months. At your appointment, your doctor can assess your individual insulin needs and give you proper training on new doses or dosing methods.

    Mealtime Insulin Vs Other Types Of Insulin

    Mealtime insulin works differently from how other types of insulin work. The major difference between the different types of insulin is how quickly they start acting in the blood , when theyre at their peak strength , and how long theyre effective . Heres a breakdown:

    • Rapid-acting insulin, sometimes called bolus insulin, is designed to quickly act on blood glucose during a meal. The effects of this type of insulin can start within 15 minutes and peak after about 1 to 2 hours. It works for roughly 3 hours.
    • Regular insulin begins to work 30 minutes after injection, peaks between 2 and 3 hours after the injection, and works for between 3 and 6 hours.
    • Long-acting insulin, also called basal or background insulin, works in your body throughout the day to control your blood glucose, even when youre not eating. The effects usually start a few hours after injection and last up to 24 hours.
    • Intermediate-acting insulin is similar to long-acting insulin, except it doesnt work for quite as long. It reaches the bloodstream from 2 to 4 hours after injection and is effective for about 12 to 18 hours.
    • Ultra-long-acting insulin comes into effect in 6 hours. Because it doesnt peak, it can last for more than 36 hours.

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    What Is Insulin Made Of

    Insulin is made in different ways. You and your healthcare team will discuss which insulin you can take.

    • Human insulin this is synthetic and made in a laboratory to be like insulin made in the body.
    • Analogue insulin the insulin molecule is like a string of beads. Scientists have managed to alter the position of some of these beads to create genetically engineered insulin known as analogues.
    • Animal insulin This isnt used much anymore, but some people find that insulin from animals works best for them. It is usually from a cow or pig.

    Do Count Your Carbs Before Using Mealtime Insulin

    Mayo Clinic Explains Insulin Resistance

    Work with your doctor to understand the amount of mealtime insulin you need to inject. This is based on the number of servings of carbohydrates you plan on eating during a meal and your blood sugar prior to eating.

    Over time, youll get better at figuring out your carb intake. In the meantime, a dietitian can help you come up with a meal plan that works for you.

    There are also several smartphone applications and internet-based calculators available to help you figure out your carb intake and your corresponding insulin dosage.

    Hypoglycemia, also known as low blood sugar, can happen when you take the wrong insulin dose, dont eat enough carbs after taking your insulin, exercise more than usual, or feel stressed.

    You should take the time to learn the signs and symptoms of hypoglycemia, including:

    • being unable to speak or think clearly
    • loss of muscle coordination
    • visual disturbance, such as blurry vision
    • feeling weak, shaky, or lightheaded

    You should learn how to manage hypoglycemia if it happens to you. For example, you can eat or drink glucose tablets, juice, soda, or hard candies. You should also be extra cautious after vigorous exercise, as it can lower blood sugar for hours after the workout.

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