Metformin Week 5

By joebrooklyn Latest Reply 2015-03-20 16:30:20 -0500
Started 2015-03-07 16:20:19 -0600

So when I started Metformin my A1C was 5.7. After 4 weeks of 1000mg/day I tested my A1C fasted and I was 6.0!!! WTF!!??
Im scheduled to see my doctor next week Saturday but in the meantime I want to increase my dosage to 1500mg/day.
Has anyone else have this medicine not work for them?

90 replies

joebrooklyn 2015-03-15 09:32:40 -0500 Report

I went to do the follow up with my doctor yesterday and she said while an increase of A1C from 5.7 to 6.0 is not good, it's only one reading and wants me to come back for another test in 3 months. She thinks Im cheating on my diet. I do have one cheat meal per week.
She also recommended I see a nutritionist. So I made an appointment for next Sunday.
Anyway, my weight is down to 186 lbs. from 194 lbs. and my body fat from 15.1% to 12.4% all in 4 weeks. Nothing to celebrate yet as I have been down to 10.1% and 10.6% before without being able to break it. So I will keep you open minded people posted.

joebrooklyn 2015-03-15 09:41:40 -0500 Report

I forgot to mention she said to not increase my dosage of Met to 1500mg. So I have dialed it back to 1000mg.

Anonymous 2015-03-14 06:49:04 -0500 Report

I have been on 2000mg Metformin for over a year. My A1c has been up around 10-12.
The doctor has put me on Gilipizide 10mg. My blood sugar has come down from 200+
to near normal. Quite a few green days and a occassional low bg. Yesterday, I got down to 53. I don't mind as it gives me a excuse to munch a small handful of M&M's. I've only been on the Met/Gilipizide for about a month so it's a little early to tell what my A1c is yet.

sweetslover 2015-03-11 15:35:38 -0500 Report

I have been on metformin for 5 months. Along with diet and exercise, it has really worked for me. A1c of 10 at diagnosis, 7.6 a month later, and 5.3 at 4 months post diagnosis. I think exercise and watching carbs is the key to helping the metformin do its job. I am fortunate enough to be able to eat around 75g of carbs a day if I EXERCISE along with it.

tina2015 2015-03-10 12:00:07 -0500 Report

I do not get why your on metformin if your AIC is 5.7?

joebrooklyn 2015-03-10 12:03:09 -0500 Report

Because anything between 5.7 and 6.0 is prediabetic from what Ive read.

tina2015 2015-03-10 14:00:17 -0500 Report

have you tried just diet and exercise before taking the meds?

joebrooklyn 2015-03-10 15:09:13 -0500 Report

Yes ofcourse. I tried, exercise, diet, supplements, steroids and other ancillary drugs like Clenbuterol and T-3.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-03-09 17:30:12 -0500 Report

The more I think about this the more I am developing an real opinion…A1C test can be off by as much as .5…so a "rise" of .3 may not be a rise at all…I recommend waiting to see what your next A1C is…and cut back on the carbs…

joebrooklyn 2015-03-09 18:28:27 -0500 Report


Ok, let's say you're right and a 0.3 movement is not a movement at all. I'm still not ready to open the champagne bottles. Why is it that after 4 weeks of Metformin there was no movement?

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-03-09 18:42:15 -0500 Report

Metformin is not a miracle drug…I had trouble getting my BG under control the first month I was on it…it wasn't till I totally cut my carbs down to 20 that I saw real movement in my numbers…I have since learned that I can go up a bit more..but yeah I cut them down to 20 a day to begin with and my A1C dropped like a ball being tossed from a roof…

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-03-09 23:10:41 -0500 Report

yeah..thats what you are suppose to do…two cups of dark leafy greens a day and a cup of nonstarchy veggies every day,,the rest of your carbs come from the small amounts in cheese, cream and eggs…once you are doing it for 3 to 4 weeks you can add 5 grams of carbs per day per week..until you hit your comfort Zone…my comfort zone was dictated by my BG…

joebrooklyn 2015-03-09 23:51:56 -0500 Report

I actually tried this for about 6 days. My appetite tanked. I would like to try it again but Im getting conflicting opinions here. Some say I should eat carbs others say I shouldn't. Other's are saying my fat 13.4% body fat is "ideal". Maybe I should post a pic of what "ideal really is.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-03-10 01:13:35 -0500 Report

You are always going to get conflicting opinions…you need to do what is right for you…if your waiting for everyone to agree you will be waiting forever…if you don't have any fat to lose you wont lose fat..your body will settle where it is suppose to be…

joebrooklyn 2015-03-10 09:31:36 -0500 Report

I weigh 188 lbs. This morning I checked my body fat% and it was 14.1%. So that means that I am 26.5 lbs. of fat (188x.141). Now if I want to get to 8.5% I have to lose 5.6% of fat or 10.52 lbs. I have already increased my dosage of Metformin to 1500mg. I will now try 2 days of no carbs and my carb days I will try to limit to potatoes and sweet potatoes while I wait for Saturday and see what my doctor says.

Chopstix 2015-03-09 15:55:56 -0500 Report

When I was diagnosed in 2005 my A1C was 12.5. My last was 6.4 and you should have seen the smile on my face. I am not going to complain especially since I was able to get myself off of pills and then insulin(after bypass). My doctor tells me to keep doing what I'm doing…

joebrooklyn 2015-03-09 16:14:50 -0500 Report

What are you doing?

Chopstix 2015-03-09 21:14:04 -0500 Report

When I was first diagnosed I weighed in at 250 pounds. I didn't go on diet but changed my diet. Being an over-the-road driver it is hard to find decent food on the road so I started bringing as much from home as possible. Since most places we go have microwave ovens I bought a plug-in cooler for storage. I walk as much as possible and try to park in truckstops I know it is safe to go walking. My idiot doctor had me on four(4) pills and I took myself off one, Diabeta, because it made my feet hurt. It was kind of a slow process but I manage to get down to 210 before I injured my hand which didn't bleed properly. It bled under the skin and when scab and skin fell off a bit was still left inside of me that ended up causing three blockages(heart attack). That was 2013 and I was put on insulin after surgery because the stress on my body caused my blood glucose to shoot up to over 200 and stay there. I drink a 'tea' made with apple cider vinegar, cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, black pepper(helps turmeric get into body) one to three times daily in a mug(16oz) of warm to hot water. I added more vegetables, whole grain, fruit to my diet and try to stay away from fried and process foods as much as possible. Like I tell others: If it's white don't eat it. There is a book call Eat Right For Your Blood Type you may find useful. Suzy Cohen's Diabetes Without Drugs is a good read too. A lot of what I know about treating my diabetes is from trial and error trying to figure out what works best for me. I've found if I do things like cut grass, cut limbs with a hand saw, go walking my blood glucose stays from the low 90's to about 110 without pills or insulin. Oh, 2013 I was put on disability because I have 'old' heart damage I did not about. Flaxseed oil and magnesium have treated me well too. Now the only pills I have prescribed are a blood thinner and an aspirin…

Chopstix 2015-03-10 11:56:45 -0500 Report

It doesn't have a name. It's just something I came up with from the books and websites I've researched. Everything is in my kitchen cabinet because we also cook with them…

Chopstix 2015-03-11 12:00:35 -0500 Report

ACV-1-2 teaspoons; turmeric, cinnamon, ginger-about a pinch and about a dash of pepper. And research the medicinal properties of each…

Diane Dorfman
Diane Dorfman 2015-03-09 12:00:12 -0500 Report

Metformin has really never lowered my A1C. I take 1000mg twice daily and my numbers are pretty much the same. Give or take. Just talk to your Doc, it may be normal.
Good Luck!

valentine lady
valentine lady 2015-03-09 01:18:35 -0500 Report

Obviously your professional was wrong on this issue of diabetes. The one day on, one day off diet you've adopted. .
This diet would probably be correct for the normal person. But not a diabetic. That's what everyone's trying to tell you. I'm
sorry Atkins,s does not work for you at 45. I'm 63 and wheelchair bound and it works great for me. I consume up. to
60 g. Of carbs per day. I'm sorry we have this banter going on between us. We both think we're right. VL

joebrooklyn 2015-03-09 14:07:43 -0500 Report

I don't mind the banter. I want the truth. That's why I'm on this board. To share my experience and hope someone has a solution. As I said before, I am not diabetic. I am prediabetic and if you ask my kooky doctors they will say Im not even prediabetic. So what do you suggest I do?

valentine lady
valentine lady 2015-03-09 18:47:01 -0500 Report

Hi Joe,
You do not appear to need to loose weight so I would follow the Mediterranean Diet. You may loose a little but you'll get plenty of carbs. Your
A1C is not governed by your Metformin I would wait until you see your Dr. again before you do anything. By that I mean take it upon yourself to up your Metformin. What I don't understand is since your just boarder line diabetic why did your Dr. give you 1,000mg of Metformin.? Twice daily??? Are you sure you understood him/her correctly?

joebrooklyn 2015-03-09 19:36:57 -0500 Report

I don't want to lose weight, I want to lose fat. Maybe I'm not making my self clear here.
When I was in my 20s I never had to watch what I ate, I never did cardio and I was 8.5% body fat. I just lifted weights, got big and muscular. When I turned 30 or so, I started gaining fat. So I went on the Atkins diet. Or at least I thought I was. In reality I was just on a very low carb diet. I eliminated bread, pasta, potatoes and rice from my diet; but I still had veggies and occasional fruit. I also allowed myself a bison burger in a thin whole wheat pita bread with veggies for lunch and a sweet potato banana pie as desert and within 2-3 weeks the fat melted off. I saw all 6 of my abs again. Then I got married at 32 and I stopped working out. By the time I was about 37 I was getting chunky again so I decided to go to the gym again. Now, when I was young, within 2-3 weeks of the gym I would get so big people thought I was on steroids; but now I had been at the gym for 4 weeks and I saw very little muscle gain and very little fat loss even though I was doing cardio. Then I found out that men's testosterone levels begin to drop after 33 and lower testosterone meant your body could not maintain muscle as much and since your body expended more calories maintaining muscle than fat and now I had less muscle, my metabolism slowed. I had also noticed my libido waning. So, I decided to just double down. I cut my caloric intake, cut my carb intake lifted weights harder, did more cardio but this time sprints not long distance running and while I didn't gain much muscle I did lose fat and I went from 17% body fat to 10.1% but I couldn't break the 10% barrier. That's when I decided to use steroids. I got big and strong and horny; but I still couldn't break the 10% body fat barrier. So then I started doing Clenbuteral and then T-3 and nothing. I had my T-3 tested and they said it was normal. Finally, from researching on the internet I read about insulin resistance. I got my A1C checked and my blood sugar. My A1C was 5.7 and my BS was 90. I was told I was "normal". But I kept researching because I knew there was something wrong with my body. It was just too hard to get lean. That's when I read that although a rage of 4-6.0 for A1C is normal, the range between 5.7 and 6.0 was prediabetic. And while a BS fasted of 90 was ok, optimal levels for fat loss was 83-84. That's when I came to the conclusion I was prediabetic and began to look for drugs to fight it. I found Metformin and went to many GPs who laughed at me. They said I wasn't fat. Well compared to them I wasn't fat they were in terrible shape; but compared to the 23 year old Joe I was disgusting. So I went to an Endo to plead my case. She also didn't think I was prediabetic or insulin resistant but I convinced her to put me on it. I have gotten tested for weight maintenance and I am supposed to eat between 2500-2600 calories per day to maintain my weight but most days I don't eat more than 2000. So I know something is wrong with me. Do you guys got it now?

haoleboy 2015-03-09 23:02:22 -0500 Report

yup … got it … you want to use metformin as a fountain of youth and you shopped around until you found a "Doctor" that wrote you a prescription so you could reduce your body fat % from ideal to lean
now that it didn't work you've come here crying the blues?
Am I close?
Spare me … I'm out of this discussion.

joebrooklyn 2015-03-09 23:45:32 -0500 Report

I'm not asking for a fountain of youth. I just want my body to respond to diet and exercise. There are many people my age with 8.5% body fat. I have a friend my age that still competes.

Homely54 2015-03-11 14:12:19 -0500 Report

My goodness. Yes it's clear. I am sorry to read about your tribulations with your weight, but in all actually haoleboy and Mallacai are right. You are just battling weightloss that have nothing to do with diabetes like the rest of us are struggling with here on DC. Please don't get me wrong, i don't mean to sound like i don't care but You are not diabetic and your concern is with just ordinary weight loss. Your A1c is not that of a diabetic but that you should just watch what you eat. Your body is just reacting like most people when they are getting older, it gets harder to loss the weight, and with some it's a harder struggle than others to make it happen. And for the life of me why in the world would you compare yourself to a 23 year old? It seems your trying to get rid of what little you should hold on to. Keep it real, you sound like your fabulous. Don't be so hard on yourself. Good Luck Joebrooklyn hope you don't mind my reality check.

Homely54 2015-03-11 20:37:11 -0500 Report

I hope everything works out, there is a answer somewhere for you but maybe different from what you want to hear, So be careful and do keep an eye on doctors that will prescribe medication when there is no medical reason for it, it's not in your best interest.
The New Yorker :)

TonyV 2015-03-11 08:58:43 -0500 Report

Joe, look, what you're experiencing is what everyone experiences as they age, whether they have diabetes or not. It simply becomes more difficult to lose weight and tone up as we get older. Your first order of business is to accept that because it seems your wallowing a bit in self denial. That said, you are no doctor and have no business trying to self diagnose yourself. I find it laughable that you continued to see different doctors until one finally gave you the Metformin that you so craved. For someone that actually does have diabetes Metformin will pull your poke test down about 10pts, give or take. It is no miracle drug. Another thing, some people actually poke higher AFTER fasting. I'm this way myself. My first thing in the morning readings are always higher than my evening readings. How do you know, at this early stage, what your normal poke test should be? Your normal could have been about 90 all of your life. Which by the way does not indicate diabetes, pre or otherwise. An AC-1 of 5.7 may also be normal for you. You're going to need at least a year or two of history before you start jumping to conclusions. If you see that your numbers are slowly increasing, well then MAYBE you have prediabetes. If your numbers stay pretty much the same, then don't worry about it. A change in 0.3 is negligible, although an increasing trend of 0.3 every 3 months over the course of a year may be cause for alarm. At this point in time you're working yourself up into lather over absolutely nothing.

valentine lady
valentine lady 2015-03-08 20:22:03 -0500 Report

Hi Joe,
I forgot to add this to my post below. You just can't raise you
Metformin without consulting your Dr. When you run out quick and
You will. How are you going to con your Dr. Into an early refill. It won't happen. The Metformin will work for you. Just not over night.
Sometimes a month is not enough time. You were only up .3…that may have come from that crazy diet plan you devised. Joe, get a grip…VL

joebrooklyn 2015-03-08 21:40:07 -0500 Report

I'm seeing my doctor next week and we will discuss the findings. If she doesn't up mu dose I will find another doctor.
Now you say my A1C going up 0.3 was due to my diet. My diet is one day on carbs one day off, which means I took in LESS carbs (i.e. sugar), so please explain to me how taking in LESS carbs causes A1C to go up?

jayabee52 2015-03-09 09:28:53 -0500 Report

Joe, when someone stresses their body, the stress enzymes cortisol and adreneline call for glycogen from reserves stored in the liver. This mechanism is in everyone's body but is problematic for those with diabetes because the insulin is not working right either due to insulin resistance or not enough is being produced by the pancreas. That is one reason your A1c can go up even when your eating less carbs. You are stressing your body trying to get it to do what it seems not inclined to do.

You want to lower your body's fat content to 8.5 from your current 13.4.

You had come here asking about a raise of 0 .3 in your A1c on Met. Quite truthfully you are fighing your body, as I and others have patiently explained to you.

Some things are simply not worth doing as it will mess with your body too much. You only get one body. I hate to have you mess it up with what seems to be invincible ignorance somewhere along the line in the rush to manipulate your body to do what it seems not to want to do.


jayabee52 2015-03-10 15:45:36 -0500 Report

Frankly. Joe, I would suggest that you be satisfied with the body you do have. It is great you have the body that you do,

I used to be a long distance bicycler, doing 100+ mile rides a day. However I had to make a living and didn't think I'd be able to do that forever so I went to college and grad school. I still bicycled in my off times and enjoyed it, I married and had children and my free time diminished and I rarely got on my bike. My bike left my posession some years later after my son gave it away during a time I had some major medical problems. I couldn't even get on the bike anymore due to balance difficulties.

I am 63 yo and had abused my body and now I have a plethora of "medical challenges". One of the reasons I urge you to take better care of your body and stop your quest for the lowered bf numbers is you may well be doing damage to your body in that quest.

Your prediabetes may even be the beginning salvo your body's rebellion against how you are treating it. As one who has abused his body (in other ways, of course) I'd encourage you to take it easy on yourself and take good care of it and get the most life as you can out of the time you have. The course you are on seems to have medical challenges in the future for you.

Ultimately it matters little that others your age are competing in body building. You may only be seeing the outside appearances. The truth behind the facade may well be different. Please review this slideshow about some bodybuilders who went too far in pursuit of their "sport" ~
You may be aware of some or all of those but these examples are a warning against blind persuit of what you might call "Perfection",

Praying God's best for you (and it may not be what you think it is)

joebrooklyn 2015-03-10 17:15:49 -0500 Report


Thank you for your reply and sharing your experience; but I didn't get to this point in my life with my body fat issue because I had been "persuing" it. On the contrary, from the ages of 32-38 I didn't work out at all and didn't take care of myself. I didn't know about how a man's body changes (i.e. lower testosterone) and I got caught off guard. All I'm trying to do now is to stop this deterioration before it's too late. I'm not in danger yet but all the signs are there for possible problems: High normal A1C, High normal BS, body not responding to diet and exercise. As for the body builders you mentioned, yes, I agree they went too far. Im not an extremist, I dont want to be 5% body fat, just 8.5%. That's still a very healthy percentage while still being able to see all 6 abs.

jayabee52 2015-03-10 17:47:49 -0500 Report

Joe, read your posts in this discussion, Most of them tell me that you're pursuing that goal of 8.5% bf. You claim you're not in danger and maybe you are not at this time. However those who pursued the courses that you did didn/t think they were in danger until it was too late for them. There is an illustration of which I am aware in which a rich man was looking for a new chauffeur. When 3 candidates offered their services he asked each "How close can you drive to the edge of the cliff over there without going over." One replied 1", another replied 6" and the 3rd replied "2 feet, the further away the better." The rich man choose the 3rd candidate. With your seeking the 8.5% bf you are like the 2nd applicant.
Do you really need to see all 6 abs? Why not go for all 8 abs on your body? ~


Mallacai 2015-03-08 08:40:48 -0500 Report

P.S. A1c test should be done at three months intervals as your blood changes ( renews) in that time.

joebrooklyn 2015-03-08 13:57:09 -0500 Report

Ok but it shouldn't go up after 4 weeks of Metformin, no?

haoleboy 2015-03-08 14:42:30 -0500 Report

The A1c test is not a simple average of the previous 2 - 3 months rather it is weighted towards the previous 4 weeks since roughly 1/2 of your red blood cells present were formed in the 4 weeks prior to the test … so yes, it can go up (or down) in just 4 weeks).


haoleboy 2015-03-08 19:50:00 -0500 Report

taking metformin is no guarantee that your bgl will go down,particularly as you are a rather low dose.
for me things improved when I started keeping my daily total carb intake to under 100 … now staying under 50.
Not to be a total downer but … diabetes is a progressive disease … we don't always improve.


joebrooklyn 2015-03-08 20:22:27 -0500 Report

That's why I want to increase my dose to 1500mg which I started already yesterday. Also, keep in mind, I dont actually have diabetes. I am prediabetic and insulin resistant but by doctors say I am neither.

joebrooklyn 2015-03-08 21:44:35 -0500 Report

I went to an Endocrinologist and told her that no matter what I did I could not lose fat. As with most doctors she had no creativity whatsoever and referred to the stand chart of obesity and the A1C ranges and my waist size and that my 13.4% body fat was not bad. I dont want to be not bad I want to be 8.5%, I want my body to respond to exercise and diets. She reluctantly agreed to give me a prescription and as we now know it didn't work.

Mallacai 2015-03-08 08:37:18 -0500 Report

Hello joebrooklyn,
I am no expert but i will attempt to answer your question.Metformin is a drug used to help manage high blood glucose. It does this by helping your cells use the sugars in your blood and also suppresses the amount of sugar the liver releases. Metformin by itself will not reduce your A1c. A low carbohydrate diet and copious amount of exercises together with your oral drug will do the trick.
To manage your diabetes you have to adopt a holistic approach i.e. a proper diet, exercise,medicine, sleep, reduced stress, in other words a healthy life style.
For me i stopped using refined sugar in any form and only ate home cooked meals and cut my portion size ( be it meals, drinks or snacks) and started exercising a lot.
A word of advice do not ever self medicate or adjust your medication without a doctors advice.
Hope this helps.

joebrooklyn 2015-03-08 14:01:26 -0500 Report

Thank you Mallcai; but I already have altered my diet, I have lifted weights my whole life and recently incorporated cardio. As for sleep, I get it when I can; but I do have a job, a side business and I like to exercise by going to the gym. As for stress, I eliminated a lot of stress by divorcing my wife; but I can't seem to do anything about NYC traffic. Any suggestions on the NYC traffic. I would like them to build double or triple decker expressways like they have in Texas and California; but I can't seem to get the Governor od NY on the phone. I recently got a ticket for driving in the HOV lane and now have to go to court. Very stressful.

Mallacai 2015-03-09 07:11:38 -0500 Report

Hello Again,
A lack of sleep wrecks havoc on one's hormone production and other aspect of your body. Try getting enough sleep and see what happens from there. If you think NY traffic is bad come to Trinidad. We have congestion any day anytime coupled with total disregard for traffic laws. Can you imagine that you have a green light and the cars that have red crossing the intersection as though they have the right of way, driving on the shoulder etc. Trust me it cannot be as bad there.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-03-07 21:08:49 -0600 Report

Hey Joe Brooklyn!!!!!…B-R-O-O-K-L-Y-N?????!!!!…Nothing helpful to add to this conversation..except…I love BROOKLYN!!!…What part are your from??

joebrooklyn 2015-03-07 21:11:48 -0600 Report


Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-03-07 22:02:37 -0600 Report

NICE!!!!…I sold tons of real estate there..lmao that was one up and coming neighborhood that made my income up and coming,,..I am a Bay Ridge longer in NY..(sad face)..

Homely54 2015-03-11 19:59:19 -0500 Report

Jibber Jabber, Joebrooklyn your my neighbors. I'm from New York City(Harlem NYC) no longer :(
(excuse me for getting of subject at hand)

Homely54 2015-03-12 19:30:26 -0500 Report

Yes, that was my big mistake. Hopefully one day i'll make it back, but for now just trying not to feel like a fish out of water, LOL.

joebrooklyn 2015-03-12 20:07:38 -0500 Report

As you can see from some of the people who have responded to my post, the rest of the US is still not ready for an Italian from Brooklyn. That's why as much as I hate it hear I cannot leave.

Homely54 2015-03-12 21:11:36 -0500 Report

Well the truth of the matter is Brooklyn's Little Italy is how Brooklyn gets it flavor. You just bring flavor to your conversations. :) . as far as everyone else is concerned I think they and myself are concerned you may be causing harm to your health by pushing so hard and medicating improperly. Careful Joe,

joebrooklyn 2015-03-12 21:42:06 -0500 Report

I get that they are worried; but I am not only an ex-Infantryman with a hard head I'm also a very conservative accountant. I take very calculated risk and do my research and ask the opinion of many people before I do something. I have taken all the advice in stride and it may very well be possible that all these people are correct. I am seeing the doctor again on Saturday and see what she says. If she is adamant again that I am not prediabetic then I will come off Metformin for a while and ask a person who's body fat is below 10% what there BS and A1C is. If it's lower than mine, then I found the answer and I will go back on Metformin, if not then I will take everyone's advice and give up and let myself become fat. That Nutella is waiting for me, mmmmmmm.