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What Blood Sugar Level Requires Insulin


Do Not Become Discouraged

Why you need to get your insulin level checked | Dr Anthony Talorico

Remember type 2 diabetes is a journey and a learning process. It is not a destination or a death sentence. For some individuals diabetes has been reversed, for others it stops in its tracks.

Every blood glucose reading is just another piece of data that you can use as helpful information in solving the puzzle of your condition. Remember, you arent in this alone! There are all kinds of resources and support available for you, this site being one of them.

Knowing your blood sugar levels is extremely important. Download our blood sugar charts to help eliminate any confusion. They contain both mg/dl and mmol/l, along with appropriate A1C levels.

Its a great resource to have on hand, plus there are some tips on how to deal with high readings.


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First Some Basic Things To Know About Insulin:

  • Approximately 40-50% of the total daily insulin dose is to replace insulin overnight, when you are fasting and between meals. This is called background or basal insulin replacement. The basal or background insulin dose usually is constant from day to day.
  • The other 50-60% of the total daily insulin dose is for carbohydrate coverage and high blood sugar correction. This is called the bolus insulin replacement.

Bolus Carbohydrate coverage

The bolus dose for food coverage is prescribed as an insulin to carbohydrate ratio.The insulin to carbohydrate ratio represents how many grams of carbohydrate are covered or disposed of by 1 unit of insulin.


Generally, one unit of rapid-acting insulin will dispose of 12-15 grams of carbohydrate. This range can vary from 6-30 grams or more of carbohydrate depending on an individuals sensitivity to insulin. Insulin sensitivity can vary according to the time of day, from person to person, and is affected by physical activity and stress.

Bolus High blood sugar correction

The bolus dose for high blood sugar correction is defined as how much one unit of rapid-acting insulin will drop the blood sugar.

Generally, to correct a high blood sugar, one unit of insulin is needed to drop the blood glucose by 50 mg/dl. This drop in blood sugar can range from 30-100 mg/dl or more, depending on individual insulin sensitivities, and other circumstances.

How Much Pineapple Can A Diabetic Have

Its hard to give a definitive answer as it depends on how much pineapple is eaten. However, many sources say that 100g of pineapple has about the same effect as a single slice of cake.


The whole pineapple has a lower glycemic index than just the pineapple juice, so it is better to eat an entire fresh fruit. However, if you dont have access to fresh pineapples then bottled or canned pineapple will do as well. Its important not to make this a daily habit though because canned or bottled pineapple contains more sugar content.

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How Are Ketones Tested

Testing your blood or urine to measure your ketone levels can all be done at home. At-home testing kits are available for both types of tests, although urine testing continues to be more common. Urine tests are available without a prescription at most drugstores, or you can buy them online.

You should test your urine or blood for ketones when any of the following occurs:

  • Your blood sugar is higher than 240 mg/dL.
  • You have symptoms of DKA.
  • You feel sick or nauseated, regardless of your blood sugar reading.

To perform a urine test, you urinate into a clean container and dip the test strip into the urine. For a child who isnt potty-trained, a parent can usually press the stick to their childs wet diaper to test for ketones.


Urine testing strips contain special chemicals that change colors when they react with ketones. You can interpret the test results by comparing the test strip to the color chart on the package. When you have ketones present in your urine, its called ketonuria.

An at-home meter is available to test for blood ketones. This is performed in a similar way to a finger-stick glucose test. You prick your finger with a needle and place a small drop of blood onto the testing area.

Doctors often recommend that people whove just received a diabetes diagnosis test their ketones twice daily.

While individual testing may vary, in general, results for ketone testing are labeled in the following way:

normal/negative

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How Diabetes Affects Insulin Production

Blood Sugar After Eating  How to Manage it Better

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 can’t 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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Testing Blood Sugar Is Easy

Listen guys, blood sugar is something that you can test very easy.Back in the late 1960s, 70s, they developed a fairly easy home test that you can do, and its got better and cheaper as its went along.


You can prick your finger, you can pick wherever you need to prick on your body, and you can get a little blood and these test devises, are, are, you can buy them anywhere.

And you can find out what your blood sugar readings are, both when youre fasted and after you eat, or whatever.You can do tests and people do this, lots of people do this.In a lot of ways, its really good, because you can test how food is doing. What its doing to your body.

You know, were all different, people respond to foods differently.So you, you really need to know what some foods are doing to you.

Check Blood Sugar Levels

Checking your blood sugar levels is another part of your diabetes treatment plan. It lets you know how well the other parts of your treatment like your insulin injections and meal plan are working.

Your diabetes care team may recommend that you use a continuous glucose monitor . A CGM is a wearable device that can measure blood sugar every few minutes around the clock. It’s measured by a thread-like sensor inserted under the skin and secured in place. Sensors can stay in place for about a week before they have to be replaced and are accurate enough to replace frequent finger-stick testing. The more frequent CGM blood sugar readings can help you and the care team do an even better job of troubleshooting and adjusting your insulin doses and diabetes management plan to improve blood sugar control.


A blood glucose meter or CGM tells you what your blood sugar level is at the moment. Your doctor may also send you for another type of blood sugar test that tells you how your blood sugar levels have been for the 3 months before the test.

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Recommended Blood Sugar Targets For Most People With Diabetes*

Your targets may not be the same as the examples in this chart. Your targets are important and should be specific to you.

A1C**
4.0 to 7.05.0 to 10.0

* This information is based on the Diabetes Canada 2018 Clinical Practice Guidelines for the Prevention and Management of Diabetes in Canada and is a guide.** A1C is a measurement of your average blood sugar control for the last two to three months and approximately 50 per cent of the value comes from the last 30 days.

How To Prevent High Blood Sugar

Type 1 Diabetes

The best way to treat high blood sugar is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Not only does this help to avoid a potential emergency, but it also reduces the likelihood of experiencing diabetic complications. Patients with diabetes can prevent high blood sugar by taking some of the following measures:


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Managing Your Diabetes Devices

If you are using an insulin pump, talk to your diabetes team about how to best manage hyperglycemia. In general, be sure to check your pump first. Make sure all parts are connected and working correctly. Check your bolus history and temporary basal rate. Also check your insulin to make sure it has not expired or gotten too warm.

If you use a CGM, try not to react to it too often. You might be tempted to give another dose of insulin too soon, before the first one finishes working, which is known as stacking insulin this can cause low blood sugar .

How Can I Keep My Blood Sugar Level From Getting Too High Or Too Low

You need to check your blood sugar level regularly using a blood glucose monitor. Your doctor or his or her office staff can teach you how to use the monitor. Youll need to write down each measurement and show this record to your doctor. He or she will use this information to decide how much insulin is right for you.


Blood sugar measurements can vary depending on your lifestyle. Stress levels, how often you exercise, and how fast your body absorbs food can affect measurements. Hormonal changes related to puberty, menstrual cycles, and pregnancy can, too. Illness, traveling, or a change in your routine may mean that you have to monitor your blood sugar level more often.

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Fasting Blood Glucose Level Test Preparation

What should you do if your doctor orders a fasting blood sugar test? The preparation is the same as when you take a fasting test for cholesterol. First, be sure to find out if you need to schedule an appointment for your test . Ask your doctor what time is best to take it.

Then:

  • Schedule your test if necessary
  • Ask your doctor if you need to change any of the medications you take on the morning of the test
  • If you normally drink coffee or have caffeine, ask your doctor if that is okay. It may not be, since it affects blood sugar levels
  • Fast for at least 8 hours before your test. Usually, an overnight fast is most convenient
  • You can drink water

When To See A Doctor

Advantages of a low

According to the University of Michigan, blood sugar levels of 300 mg/dL or more can be dangerous. They recommend calling a doctor if you have two readings in a row of 300 or more.


See your doctor if you have consistently high blood sugar levels. Symptoms of this include:

  • increased thirst
  • high levels of sugar in urine

Ask your doctor how often to check your blood sugar and about your ideal blood sugar levels.

If you dont currently see a doctor who specializes in diabetes, known as an endocrinologist, you can find one by searching the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists website.

You can find a certified diabetes educator by visiting the American Diabetes Associations website and searching by zip code.

Summary

Talk to your doctor if you have consistently high blood sugar readings or symptoms of chronic hyperglycemia.

Checking your blood sugar and then treating hyperglycemia early will help prevent any complications.


Health problems can arise when someone has high blood sugar regularly and without treatment.

Examples of complications include:

  • nerve damage, called diabetic neuropathy, that may affect sensations in the feet and hands
  • diabetic retinopathy, or damage to the blood vessels in the eyes that affects vision
  • increased risks for kidney problems
  • increased risks for heart problems

Taking steps to keep your blood sugar at target levels can help to minimize the likelihood that these complications will occur.

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Correcting High Blood Sugar Levels With Insulin

If you take insulin, one way to reduce blood sugar is to inject insulin.


However, be careful as insulin can take 4 hours or longer to be fully absorbed, so you need to make sure you take into account how much insulin you may already have in your body that is yet to be absorbed by the blood. Insulin that is yet to be absorbed by the blood is called active insulin.

If you decide to correct with insulin, watch you dont over correct as this can lead to hypoglycemia and can be dangerous, particularly so before bed.

Monitoring Blood Glucose Levels

Blood glucose levels can be measured easily at home or anywhere.

A fingerstick glucose test is most often used to monitor blood glucose. Most blood glucose monitoring devices use a drop of blood obtained by pricking the tip of the finger with a small lancet. The lancet holds a tiny needle that can be jabbed into the finger or placed in a spring-loaded device that easily and quickly pierces the skin. Most people find that the pricking causes only minimal discomfort. Then, a drop of blood is placed on a reagent strip. The strip contains chemicals that undergo changes depending on the glucose level. The glucose meter reads the changes in the test strip and reports the result on a digital display. Some devices allow the blood sample to be obtained from other sites, such as the palm, forearm, upper arm, thigh, or calf. Home glucose meters are smaller than a deck of cards.

Continuous glucose monitoring systems use a small glucose sensor placed under the skin. The sensor measures blood glucose levels every few minutes. There are two types of CGMs, with different purposes:

  • Professional

  • Personal

Professional CGMs collect continuous blood glucose information over a period of time . Health care providers use this information to make treatment recommendations. Professional CGMs do not provide data to the person with diabetes.

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Ideal Blood Sugar Levels

A range of factors, including insulin resistance, diabetes, and an unbalanced diet, can cause blood sugar levels to spike or plummet.

The standard measurement units for blood sugar levels are milligrams per deciliter . Ideal blood sugar ranges are as follows:

Timing

Insulin and glucagon do not take immediate effect, particularly in people whose blood sugar levels are extremely high or low.

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What Is Insulin And Why Do I Need It

Ideal Blood Sugar Level on Ketogenic Diet

Insulin is a hormone that controls the level of blood sugar in your body. People with diabetes may not have enough insulin or may not be able to use it properly. The sugar builds up in the blood and overflows into the urine, passing out of your body unused. Over time, high blood sugar levels can cause serious health problems.

All people with type 1 diabetes, and some people with type 2 diabetes, need to take insulin to help control their blood sugar levels. The goal in treating diabetes is to keep the blood sugar level within a normal range.

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Where Do I Inject The Insulin

Insulin is injected just under the skin. Your doctor or his or her office staff will show you how and where to give an insulin injection. The usual places to inject insulin are the upper arm, the front and side parts of the thighs, and the abdomen. Dont inject insulin closer than 2 inches from your belly button.

To keep your skin from thickening, try not to inject the insulin in the same place over and over. Instead, rotate injection places.

Faq: Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why is insulin so expensive?

Though reforms are underway in many parts of the US, insulin costs are still prohibitively expensive for many people with diabetes. Reasons include the complexity of the pharmaceutical supply chain and lack of generic substitutes.

2. What is sliding scale insulin?

Sliding scale therapy is a regimen that prescribes a progressive increase in insulin doses before meals and at bedtime, based on your blood sugar levels.

3. What is an insulin index?

The insulin index gives foods a rating based on how much your blood insulin concentration rises in the two hours after consumption.

4. What is an insulin resistance diet?

An insulin resistance diet incorporates foods that will help maintain your bodys balance of insulin and blood sugar. Think nourishing calories from veggies, fruit, lean proteins, and healthy fats.

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Learn More About Treatment Approaches> >

Large studies of people with Type 2 diabetes have shown that only about 30% of people taking two oral medicines have an HbA1c level of less than 7% after three years. Insulin is usually recommended as the initial therapy for diabetes if a persons HbA1c level at diagnosis is greater than 10% or if someones fasting blood glucose level is consistently above 250 mg/dl.

Studies have shown that many doctors wait until someones HbA1c level is higher than 9% to start insulin therapy, which often results in months or years of high blood glucose and an increased risk of developing complications later on. One unfortunate reality is that many busy medical practices are not set up to address the needs of people who take insulin. Starting insulin requires education and easy access to health-care providers who are knowledgeable about insulin therapy, including diabetes nurse educators, pharmacists, and doctors.

How Are High Blood Sugar Levels Treated

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Treating high blood sugar levels involves fixing what caused them in the first place. Your diabetes health care team will give you specific advice on how to keep your blood sugar levels in a healthy range. But here are some ways to manage the common causes of high blood sugar levels:

Reason for High Blood Sugar LevelWhat to Do
Not getting enough insulin or other diabetes medicine
  • Make sure that you take the proper type of insulin and the correct dose at the right time.
  • Check that insulin is not expired.
  • Make sure that all equipment is working properly.
  • Diabetes medicines may need to be changed or adjusted check with your diabetes health care team.
Not following the meal plan
  • Work with a registered dietitian to make adjustments to your meal plan as needed.
  • Adjust insulin/pills when you eat more or less than recommended on your meal plan .
Not getting enough exercise
  • Check your blood sugar levels frequently.
Use of other medicines that can increase blood sugar
  • Contact your diabetes health care team if you start taking any other medicine.
  • Your insulin or pills may need to be adjusted while you take the medicine thats causing high blood sugar levels.
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