Stopped taking my Insulin

Jim Edwards
By Jim Edwards Latest Reply 2012-02-25 19:34:00 -0600
Started 2012-02-18 10:45:16 -0600

I have been very discouraged as of late with my BG readings. I left my insulin home by accident when i went to my daughters recently. guess what? My numbers are about the same whether I inject or not. this is discouraging enough that I don't even want to bother testing my sugar levels. As long as i eat fairly well my sugar levels don't vary much, usually in the high 200's low 300's. My doctor says he wants me to test more frequently. I say why bother? If the insulin isn't making much of a difference, why inject it into my body? Example: the other week my morning BG was 340. My normal injection for the AM is 60 units of 70/30. I also have R (fast acting) which is suppose to be injeted in units of 1-5 according to the RX. Out of curiosity, I injected 60 units of R, knowing i needed to watch it closely. After 2 hours my BG was 290. Never dropped below 175. Frustrated, discouraged and ????

57 replies

fatdad94 2012-02-24 05:11:34 -0600 Report

Jim, I understand your situation. I am right there with you. If my Endo doesn't make some headway on controlling my BG I too think I will just stop injecting. My results often act opposite of what they should. My morning BG is the lowest of the day. If I exercise my BG goes up. If I eat properly my BG goes up. If I eat poorly mu BG goes down. What is a person to do but blow it all off! I also went off for a weekend and forgot my insulin. Ddin't take any all weekend and BG stayed in the high 200s, go figure!

jayabee52 2012-02-24 09:17:55 -0600 Report

Howdy again Norm,
I believe your confusion may be alleviated by knowing how diabetes works and how one's body generally works.

For instance your fasting morning BG SHOULD BE the lowest of the day. After all you have been fasting and not consuming carbs or calories all night.

To understand what may be a seeming contradiction with excercise, it would be important to know when in the day you were exerising and how long you were exercising. If you exercise before breakfast I could understand why your BGs would rise. Your exercise drops your BG levels during exercise, but your levels get low and to protect you your liver dumps its glycogen stores, which raises your BG levels to keep you from going too low. (EVERYBODY'S body does this. Only people with diabetes (PWDs) don't have the insulin response needed to keep the BG levels at a normal level, so for us, it rises.

I don't know what you mean by "eat properly" or "eat poorly" because sometimes what we THINK is proper eating may not be the best for us.

When first Dx'd Dr told me to eat right. I figured that eating right meant to eat light. So for about a month I ate rice cakes. They were not heavy sweets like cakes or pies, they were light and so I thought I was OK. Turns out I was wrong I didn't understand at that time about carbohydrates, and a carbohydrate even a lite one like a puffed ricecake could pack a BG whallop for me since it was essentially a "simple" carb.

I am not hinting that you are doing exactly that ,Norm, but perhaps something similar. So to define the words eating properly and eating poorly with specific examples might clarify what is going on there.

About the weekend without insulin and your BG stayed in the high 200s all weekend, we don't have to figure. To go without insulin for those days, BGs of over 200 may be expected.

If you said you didn't take your insulin and kept your BGs at a normal range, then we would have to go figure out what happened there.

I would recommend that you NOT blow it all off! Perhaps more education is what is needed as to the why and wherefores of diabetes. This, I believe is an ideal place to get such education, from those of us who walk in the same shoes every day, and who've battled this beast to a standstill.

Blessings to you and yours my friend!


Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-24 10:43:10 -0600 Report

I know you know a lot of stuff james, but i find it hard not to disagree with you. Why? Because my job is to disagree with you on matters of principle, whether you are right or not.
Ok, now that is out of my system. You are right, what we think is good may not be. For instance, one of my non no's that I figured would help was adding beans to my diet. I have not checked yet, but I am going to bet they are high on the carb list. I had added them to increase my fiber to keep my processing plant in good shape.
Now, I still disagree with you, I just don't know on what points and why. It is something I have to do. Gabby said it was my job! Thank you my friend.

jayabee52 2012-02-24 10:53:38 -0600 Report

Jim, Even though you feel that it is your "job" to disagree with me (BTW how much is Gabby PAYING you to disagree with me? LoL!) I still like you and clicked thumbs up on your posting.

I don't remember if I have sent you my proceedure to determine which foods 'lay nice or play nasty" with your unique metabolism. If you don't have it, and want it, please ask and I will send it to you. Then you CAN determine if those beans are truly a no-no for you or not, and you can do it methodically, not "by guess and by golly".

Thank you too my friend. Both seriously AND in good fun!

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-24 11:03:33 -0600 Report

Gabby pays me $200.00 in cash, in small unmarked bills, everytime I successfully disagree with you. For unsuccessful disagreement she only pays me $100.
No, you have not sent it to me and I have not seen it. I go by, if it is sweet and I like it, it is bad for me. If it makes me say uck and it taste like Pepto Bismol, it is good for me.

jayabee52 2012-02-24 11:26:31 -0600 Report

so you are getting a lot of $100s then. From my perspective you've had more unsuccess than success, my friend.

I am not clear. You said you'd not seen my method of determining your body's metabolic reaction to substances. Would you like to receive it? (don't want to force it on you if you don't want it, or wouldn't use it)

jayabee52 2012-02-24 11:56:19 -0600 Report

What is bad about the $100 at a time? It is NOT the $200s at a time, that's what is wrong with that! Need to make as much as you can as often as you can, right? LoL! OK I got it Jim. it will be winging its way to you momentarily.

judy makowski
judy makowski 2012-02-23 21:54:18 -0600 Report

It isn't very good for your body to run such high sugars. I ran between 250-400 . My doc tried several things and they dodm't work so she me to an endocrinologist. H said I wasn't on enough insulin and he put me on 40 units of lantis in the am and 35-40 at 10 pm.. He increased my humilog saying she hadn't put on enough. Therefore he had me taking 12 units in the am, 15 at lunch and 20 at dinner. It brought my sugars down in a couple of weeks but they did come down. It sometimes takes some trial and error but eventually yo and your doc will get it straight. Don't give up hope it will happen. Remember also each persons needs and requirements are different. Good luck

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-24 10:46:18 -0600 Report

One of the things I am trying, on my own, of course, is injecting 4 times a day instead of 2. So far the numbers are much better. I think as soon as I can get that double German Chocolate milk shake off my menu it will help. Now I will probably slide into a deep depression…(No, I haven't had a milkshake in years…do you know how hard it is to find German Chocolate Ice Cream?)

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-21 12:33:32 -0600 Report

It is funny, I posted this to mope and vent and am getting a good education from it all! Thanks!

jayabee52 2012-02-21 12:53:24 -0600 Report

I understand your wishing to "mope and vent", and that is certailnly OK. but you are loved here, good friend, and many folks want to to suceed (after you vent it out of your system) and want to help you correct what might possibly be wrong which is causing that.

You may have intended to vent, but there is the "law of unintended consequences" at work. Only this time the "law" worked for you rather than against you. (that is, unless you actually WANTED to stew in your juices — and be depressed)

Praying God's richest blessings upon you and yours, Jim


Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-21 12:24:53 -0600 Report

Okay, this is a reply to many of you, so I put it at the top. The B I was taking was B-12. I started on Lantus and got to 80 units with not real good results. Switched to 70/30 Humilin and it did better. Added R and that helped. Now, with the divorce behind me, I think that unrecognized stress was a big factor as my morning numbers are around 150 (instead of 200+), so I am starting back on the insulin as RXed and see where it goes from there. I will add the B1 or the substitute and see if that helps. I want those morning #'s below 100 or else I fught the issue all day. Thank you my friends & family.

kdroberts 2012-02-19 17:33:16 -0600 Report

So the first call you make tomorrow is to your doctor telling them that the plan you are using isn't working. There could be many things happening, but if you injected 60 units of 70/30 and your blood sugar didn't drop at some point, you may want to take the insulin back to where you got it from and claim it's a bad lot. I would also try to switch to a lantus or levimir and apidra, humalog or novalog combination and use the latter in combination with carb counting and an insulin to carb ratio. Basically trying to manually do what your body should be doing rather than waiting for your body to mess up and attempting to control the damage.

A doctor should not expect good results from a flat dose in the AM and a sliding scale based on your blood sugar. It's basically like driving a car at the exact speed limit and ignoring any other traffic or situations on the road. At some point, probably very quickly, something bad is going to happen.

w8chd 2012-02-19 16:55:03 -0600 Report

I know exactly what you mean. I have been very dissatisfied with anything related to diabetes as of late. I was taking 100 units- 75/25 twice a day and 100 of Lantus. 300 total per day. My bg readings were fine, that wasn't the problem. My problem was weight gain. But that was seven months ago. I didn't just quit with insulin for a few days. My "experiment" has run a little longer than yours. I think you have to do that once in a while. Otherwise you don't know just what you really need to do or not. You can fine out a lot in a few days. So I wouldn't necessarily recommend my rather extreme plan to everyone. Although I have lost about 80lbs. I know very well just how aggrivating it can be. Just hang in there!

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-21 12:26:54 -0600 Report

Since being on insulin, weight gain was a problem. Now, I am holding it and not gaining, but I need to lose another 60 pounds.

hughsbayou 2012-02-19 10:51:45 -0600 Report

Are you taking any supplements? I see that you mention that you are eating a lot of protein and little else. You might want to up your fat intake but usually that just comes along with the protein food.

It would seem that your metabolism is out of whack. How is your B vitamin intake? Since they are water soluble that often is deficient in diabetics and without sufficient B vitamins the cells cannot burn the glucose that they take in.

there's a B1 substitute that has helped me a lot called Benfotiamine, cheap and found on from several sources, I use Life Extension 1000 mg a day.
Has brought my BG to normal without meds.

small amounts of intense exercise several times a day is better than one long session at a time. Just get up and walk around for ten minutes every so often. A body in motion stays in motion.

Best of luck

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-21 12:30:37 -0600 Report

I try to stick to mostly a protein diet, because I get most of the other stuff as a side. Before D, my carb intake was high. Bread (good bread, but bread), 2 bowls of cereal and anything else that had carbs in it seem to call to me. I will check out the Ben. today. Thanks.

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-19 12:10:30 -0600 Report

Thanks. I was on Vit B and the doctor took me off of it. apparently one of the things Vit. B supplies was too hihg. he first cut in in half, tested a month later, still too high so he had me drop it. it has been about 2 years and i can't remember why i was on it or off it. I may try the small amounts of exercise as opposed to longer stretches. The small amounts I can work into my job (maintenance) the harder thing to do is the 30-60 minutes in a block. Thanks, i will check with the doctor to see if he remembers why i went on and then off Vit. B I know there are different B vit. maybe I was not taking the one I need. I know my iron count in my blood has alwats been high, so i do not need iron.

hughsbayou 2012-02-20 09:08:52 -0600 Report

interesting to say the least, perhaps it was the niacin. That can cause some people to get flushed and be uncomfortable. As suggested below by jayabee52 one can get B-1, which has no known side effects, and has been proven to help with glucose metabolism very cheaply. I buy the Life Extension version through and as a T2 have found it to be as effective as the Metformin while having no side effects (Met caused my intestines to go into an uproar). Your doctor may not know about it, mine didn't. On the Life Extension website if you search the term Benfotiamine there is an excellent article about the research.

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-21 12:32:25 -0600 Report

I was on Niacin a while back and the doctor told me to stop it. I do not remember why. Metformin causes my intestines to go into upchuck, not up roar.

locarbarbie 2012-02-19 11:07:15 -0600 Report

I did not know that there was a corellation to Vit B and metabolism. I have been having a problem with weight gain and insulin resistance, but I will give the B vitamins a shot. Thanks!

jayabee52 2012-02-19 17:19:27 -0600 Report

You may wish to take a synthetic form of Vit B1 called Benfotiamine. I take it to help with my glucose metabloism as well as my burning Neuropathy in my feet.
I take that and Alpha Lipolic Acid, and Biotin and my burning pain seems to be easing.

locarbarbie 2012-02-20 15:46:03 -0600 Report

James, why synthetic form? And is it just Vit B1? or the whole B spectrum? I appreciate everyone's knowledge and advice. Thanks, Barb

jayabee52 2012-02-20 16:10:10 -0600 Report

I was introduced to Benfotiamine through Hughsbayou on this site.

He says it is more "bioavailable" because it is fat soluable rather than being water soluable like Thiamine is. Yes it is only B1. It seems unusual to me that the synthetic is more useful than the regular B1. Hugh can be found a few replies above this one, and you can go to his profile and see his activity and check out what he had been saying about this. In the reply above he recommends going to the Life Extension website and read an article on the research on Benfotiamine .

EDIT: Caroltoo takes Benfotiamine also and she, a couple of replies below this talks about her regimen. Carol is a smart lady and I regard her recommendations highly

Set apart
Set apart 2012-02-22 07:07:53 -0600 Report

I also take both the ALA and benfotiamine, as recommended by James. Shared this at my last Dr. Visit which D nurse said was perfectly fine!

Caroltoo 2012-02-19 11:22:02 -0600 Report

Selenium and zink help us metabolize the B Vits that help us metabolize the carbs so that the B Vits work more efficiently.

Caroltoo 2012-02-20 16:05:32 -0600 Report

About the B's, I've always heard it best to take the complex, but I've recently also added the synthetic form of B1 (Benfotiamine) in a B1-B6-B12 mix that is supposed to stimiluate the circulatory system. I've found some skin issues clearing up and new hair on my head, so am feeling optimistic about the mix, but still also take the B complex for balance. The product I'm using is sold by the Whitaker Institute as one of the Diabetes care products and also in their cardiovascular line of products.

The Selenium and Zink help with general metabolism, protein metabolism, utilizing the B vitamins more efficiently, and to strengthen the immune system. These last two are new add-ons for me because I've been having allergy/sinus congestion issues, so I got to them by the "back door" as I wasn't directly looking for anything w/r/t metabolism. Nice side effect.

Young1s 2012-02-18 14:36:17 -0600 Report

Please reconsider taking your insulin again, Jim. Just because your numbers look the same now doesn't mean they won't skyrocket even higher later on. Given the change in your levels when you experimented with the extra insulin, maybe it's time to talk to your doctor about taking some of the other medications available to get them down.

I know how you are feeling because I was experiencing highs, I was always hesitant to even look at the meter. But once I was within range, I looked forward to testing to see and make sure I was maintaining. You seem like a fighter Jim so I know your not giving up. I'm pulling for you.

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-18 20:05:29 -0600 Report

Thanks. This is just a temporary hold. I have not tossed them or anything. My plan of action is this: For 2 days with no insulin, take my readings every 2 hours and record them. Then start back on the insulin as RXed and record the numbers for 3 days (so insulin can be in my system) Then compare. This will be more scientific and i will take it to my doctor in march. it has just been so frustrating.

Young1s 2012-02-18 20:20:04 -0600 Report

Good to hear it's just an exercise in getting better control and understanding on how the insulin is effecting your numbers. As Carol stated, I too was a little worried about you.

jayabee52 2012-02-18 13:49:51 -0600 Report

Oh MAN, Jim! I didn't know that was happening with you. I was kinda like that too in the early years of my Dx. Later on my life with DMt2 my body seemed to accept meds better. Now I am running at about 115 to 130. without diabetes meds. Losing 65 lbs over the last year had helped me, I believe.

I am not familiar with 70/30. I have only used NPH for myself and "NPH" "R" and "Aspart" for Jem. So I don't know much about it experientially, but I have read that folks who have trouble managing their DMt2 with regular strength insulin, have had success when their Drs switched them to U500 insulin. Might want to contact a DC member "Armorer" about it. He is one of those who use that strength of insulin, perhaps he could give you more particulars about it.

I am worried for you Jim. Running that high for that long has to be really rough on your body. I had read your other posting on vision problems and it seems you are getting some complications. You have to do something to get your BG levels under better control.

Praying that you find something which does just that!


Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-18 20:58:37 -0600 Report

I figured a lot of the high numbers were because of the mess of the divorce. We are divorced, but still need to sell/settle the real estate.

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-18 20:09:35 -0600 Report

Don't know what the DMt2 is. I do know i could afford to lose 60 pounds.
the 70/30 is 70% fast acting and 30 slow, or visa versa. I am hoping with the main part of the divorce behind me that the #'s will settle down, but i do need to exercise and drop this weight. Thanks for the input and the prayers.

camerashy 2012-02-19 02:00:13 -0600 Report

Not having an endo right now, I went to my GP and convinced him to switch me from 70/30 to 75/25 and I seem to have better control.

jayabee52 2012-02-18 20:11:59 -0600 Report

DMt2 is my shorthand for Diabetes Mellitus type 2. There are so many "D" diseases and conditions that I usually write that (or simply "DM") to try to avoid confusion.

GabbyPA 2012-02-18 11:47:18 -0600 Report

I am in your boat my friend. I have been struggling with high numbers always, but even on meds, there was little difference. I have gone back to my roots and am going back to what worked before I was on meds. Well, that is not going so well either. I am still testing though because I WILL figure out how to make it work.

So don't give up. Look at it as that you need a new plan of attack. But a 179 is way better than a 340. So you may want to rethink the no insulin part, at least until you can get a new plan to work with you.

Jim Edwards
Jim Edwards 2012-02-18 12:09:59 -0600 Report

The thing is since I was eating very little and only protein between the 2 numbers, that may have been a normal drop. I am glad i am not the only one in this sinking boat. maybe if i throw you and a few others overboard i will stay afloat longer. :)

GabbyPA 2012-02-19 10:46:56 -0600 Report

It does get discouraging, I know. It is frustrating to do what is right and still end up in places you don't want to be. You have gone through a huge life change and all of that can be part of the issue. I think we just need bigger buckets and learn how to bail faster! LOL

Next Discussion: CERT Training »