The Plain and Simple Truth About Taking Insulin

June 8th, 2011 by Amy Gonsalves Leave a reply »

I know a lot of people living with type 2 diabetes want nothing to do with taking insulin.  To me, that doesn’t make a lot of sense since from my perspective insulin is the greatest liquid I can think of.

But I digress.

I know a lot of people with type 2 don’t want to take insulin because they feel like some sort of failure if “their sugars get so bad they have to take shots.”


Let’s go through this. 

One. If you are doing all you can with your diabetes management and your body is doing its own crazy thing and your doctor believes that your health will improve if you start taking insulin… may I suggest that you are perhaps risking cutting off your nose to spite your face?

Two. If you need to take insulin, you need to take insulin.  In fact, every single living human needs insulin, so again I ask what you are trying to prove by avoiding it.   (There are a number of different types of insulin and different ways they work; you and your healthcare team will figure all of that out based on what works best for you and your body.) 

Three.  Since you were diagnosed with having type 2 diabetes, has your body ever done what you wanted it to do?  Probably not.  You haven’t been totally in charge for some time, not that you ever were!  So why would you feel like a failure at this point?  I sincerely hope no healthcare professional ever told you that you would 100% be able to avoid taking insulin, or that you would be somehow less of a person or a bad patient if you needed it.  If they did, I suggest you report them to your state medical board.

Four. If you are trying to avoid taking insulin for fear of gaining weight, there are several strategies to help you keep yourself a healthy weight.

First off, when it comes to managing your weight when you take insulin, you simply need to move and grove just like everyone needs to in order to keep fit. 

If you take more insulin than your body needs you will be at a higher risk for low blood sugars and at a higher risk for excess storing of the food you eat.  That’s why simple sugars are such a danger for everyone: they require a big load of insulin to maintain blood sugar levels as they quickly climb.  That big load doesn’t always work efficiently, and it increases your body’s tolerance (and decreases sensitivity) for excess insulin.  With the excess come the added pounds.

Keep yourself active and moving every day, keep your nutrition nutritious, and take as close to the perfect amount of the right insulin for your body and you will do great on insulin.

You and your body need that.

Today’s topic was inspired by Sheri Colberg PhD’s blog.

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