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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm a 59 year old female and was diagnosed a few years ago. I take 500 mg metformin two times a day. My FBG is usually around 120. Obviously, it takes very few carbs to put my BG over 140. I notice that many of you mention fairly low FBG levels (uner 100). Is that because you are on insulin? Is it possible to get to those low readings with only oral meds? I'm finding out there are some differences between insulin and non-insulin users, especially in regards to low blood sugar, because I never have low blood sugar. I've only started testing myself within the last 6 months. My doctor never acted as though I needed to test. I've found that I probably should have started to test myself when I was first diagnosed. There is just so much information and just not enough time to take it all in. I've found I try to limit carbs to later in the day and use them in very small amounts, much smaller than the diet recommended by the nutritionist. I think the wealth of information that is available is truly helping me stay motivated but I'm wondering at what point, insulin becomes necessary. I like my doctor but should I see an endocrinologist? I feel like I need more help to keep me on the right track for my circumstances.
 

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Hello Jeanie! If you & I each had a dollar for every patient who has been diagnosed & sent out into the world with as little guidance as you got, we'd be rich beyond our wildest dreams. The sad fact is, this is not the exception, and even when we get fixed up with dietitians & nutritionists, the picture doesn't change much, because many of them are still wrapped up in the low-fat/high-carb "healthy" diet plan which continues to be the agenda pressed by the ADA, USDA, and all the other agencies that have a finger in the pie. Which diet plan, by the way, is at least useless, and at worst deadly for diabetics.

I am non-insulin-dependent too, but I take twice as much metformin as you. And I was able to keep my total average bg down around 110 for a quite awhile with just met and low-carb diet. I don't have lows either - the lowest I ever got was about 80.

In recent months it's begun to fluctuate more, and I am struggling more to rein it in, but when I asked my doc for a little lantus at bedtime, he demurred, and increased my metformin.

Since I'm in the middle of other medical issues right now (retinal detachment), I'm maintaining as well as I can, knowing that all the ophthalmic procedures/medication/etc/etc., can wreak havoc with my bg. But once I get this eye back to normal, I expect my readings to stabilize, and if they don't, my doc & I will be having another little chat about insulin. I do not intend under any circumstances to be putting up with bg over 140 half the time, and if I have to change docs to get cooperation on the insulin issue, then I will.

Thank you for joining us, and I hope you visit often. Looking forward to getting better acquainted!

:welcome:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the welcome. I'll meet with my doc next month and want to discuss add'l metformin, however, I've read some posts about the negatives. anyway, my biggest hurdle has been making time for exercise. I really have no excuse as I have more time to exercise, it just needs to be a priority. I just need to keep soaking up as much info as I can and get out and start moving. Good luck with your eye and thanks again for your response.
 

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Some meds force the pancreas to produce insulin those meds can and do cause lows.

with proper meds and diet and exercise you should be able to keep your numbers down. If you cant then its time for insulin. better insulin than getting complications down the road from BG being too high.
 

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I'm a 59 year old female and was diagnosed a few years ago. I take 500 mg metformin two times a day. My FBG is usually around 120. Obviously, it takes very few carbs to put my BG over 140. I notice that many of you mention fairly low FBG levels (uner 100). Is that because you are on insulin? Is it possible to get to those low readings with only oral meds? I'm finding out there are some differences between insulin and non-insulin users, especially in regards to low blood sugar, because I never have low blood sugar. I've only started testing myself within the last 6 months. My doctor never acted as though I needed to test. I've found that I probably should have started to test myself when I was first diagnosed. There is just so much information and just not enough time to take it all in. I've found I try to limit carbs to later in the day and use them in very small amounts, much smaller than the diet recommended by the nutritionist. I think the wealth of information that is available is truly helping me stay motivated but I'm wondering at what point, insulin becomes necessary. I like my doctor but should I see an endocrinologist? I feel like I need more help to keep me on the right track for my circumstances.
Hi Jeanie and welcome to the forum! I am usually able to keep my fasting blood glucose under 100. I do take insulin and oral medications. I would not be able to have those numbers without insulin. I was diagnosed in 2000 and was just on glipizide until 2005. I started having headaches and blurry vision-I could barely see to drive. I went to my doctor and I tested in the 300's. He told me it was time for insulin, I agreed and my numbers returned to better than normal and I never wondered if starting insulin was the right decision. My doctor only had me testing 3 times a week and I was missing some high readings. I now test about 6 times per day and sometimes more if I test low. Testing on a regular basis is very important. I don't see an endocrinologist but if my diabetes were to get difficult to control, I would see one in a heartbeat.
 

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Some meds force the pancreas to produce insulin those meds can and do cause lows.
Metformin is NOT in that class of meds . . . metformin does NOT spank the pancreas to produce more insulin, it creates more insulin sensitivity so the cells can access the insulin already available. Metformin treats the insulin resistance that is the hallmark of type 2 diabetes. The only negative about metformin is that some patients suffer gastric side effects.
 

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I'm a 59 year old female and was diagnosed a few years ago. I take 500 mg metformin two times a day. My FBG is usually around 120. Obviously, it takes very few carbs to put my BG over 140. I notice that many of you mention fairly low FBG levels (uner 100). Is that because you are on insulin? Is it possible to get to those low readings with only oral meds? I'm finding out there are some differences between insulin and non-insulin users, especially in regards to low blood sugar, because I never have low blood sugar. I've only started testing myself within the last 6 months. My doctor never acted as though I needed to test. I've found that I probably should have started to test myself when I was first diagnosed. There is just so much information and just not enough time to take it all in. I've found I try to limit carbs to later in the day and use them in very small amounts, much smaller than the diet recommended by the nutritionist. I think the wealth of information that is available is truly helping me stay motivated but I'm wondering at what point, insulin becomes necessary. I like my doctor but should I see an endocrinologist? I feel like I need more help to keep me on the right track for my circumstances.
jeanie, Shanny is right on. The medical community is run by the medical insurance industry and our government through Medicare. Granted the insurance companies, to maintain high profits do limit the testing supplies and do studies that show many people with Type 2 diabetes do not test as often as they should and therefore don't need testing supplies.

The doctors also believe in some of the same myths as their patients and that is knowing the results of blood glucose levels only causes discouragement and depression because of the high numbers. Many doctors do not want to take the time to learn about insulin and are resistant to giving patients insulin. The last doctor that did that to me was told off and I walked out. Fortunately I was able to see an endocrinologist without a referral and this one works with me.

I am on insulin and glad that I am. While many do not need insulin and are able to manage with Metformin, many others take other medications. Insulin is not (repeat) not a death sentence as many believe.

It sounds like you need to start walking or finding a pool to do some swimming.

Good luck, keep a positive attitude.

And welcome to the forum!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for all the feedback

I've found so much info on this site, just today. Thankfully, I got to the point that I realized what I was doing to myself. I was on a locarb diet back in the 90s when Atkins was hot and found that that was the eating method I should be using. Trying to convince friends and family that carbs were the problem, not fat, just didn't work. The only person in our family who had diabetes was a a great uncle who died years ago. Of my 3 siblings, my brother has been using insulin for a year or two and another sister is prediabetic. My sister is normal weight, late 50s and has always watched her weight and exercised (and has always monitored carbs). My brother is 54, used to drink and smoke (still drinks a bit) but was normal weight until he got a desk job in his 40s. Anyway, we're trying to figure out why 3 of the four siblings have sugar issues when there has been no family history. Not that it matters. In any case, something finally clicked and testing my sugar was the turning point. I had no idea I was probably sending my readings into the 200s on a regular basis. I've been trying to keep my sugar low by avoiding carbs but it seems that eating carbs even in smaller quantities, affects me in ways that are inconsistent. The yogurt smoothy I make with plain yogurt, frozen berries and sugar free pudding takes me over 140 in the morning but later in the day when my BG is closer to 100 I feel more free to "indulge". I really work to keep my carbs under 50 gr/day. I'm gathering that most of us not using insulin are doing the same thing. I will truly work on motivating myself to exercise regularly to see where things go. Thanks for all the support. This site is exactly what I need right now.
 

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Hi
I am not taking anything as yet. I have been controlling with diet an exercise for the last 3 years but I think that may be changing soon.
I was nervous about having to take anything, but after reading this conversation, I feel better about it.
I visit this site every once in a while and every time I am here, I learn something new.
Thanks to all :)
 

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Hi Jeanie!

I think it's important to remember that diabetes is unique to each person ... my diabetic history is different from Shanny's, Breezeonby's, your's, and everyone else's. It is not that predictable.

Now I'm one of those people who have a theory that genetics plays a big role whether you're diabetic or not. Some groups: Pacific Islanders, Australian Aboriginals, African Americans, Italians, Jews, etc., have a higher risk. You say there was no family history of diabetes (except for the odd uncle) but now you and two siblings have diabetic issues. May I suggest that family members and forbears might have been diabetic, but undiagnosed?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
That certainly makes sense...about not being diagnosed. I don't think my parents or grandparents ever had regular physicals, so who knows? I have to admit that I don't really notice much of a difference in the way I feel, physically or mentally since I've been on pretty tight control. If I hadn't gone for yearly physicals, I'd probably still be plodding along doing the same old things that would eventually kill me. I'm blessed to have good health care.
 

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I was diagnosed through my annual physical checkup . . . that's the only way I know that I wasn't running high for years beforehand. I'd had blood work every year & all of a sudden in September of 2008 my FBG came back 130. I wasn't able to get in for a few more months, and by March it was up to 163. That's when doc put me on met & suggested "sorta" low carb eating (no baked potato for supper type-thing :rolleyes:), and the rest is history.
 
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