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Insulin Tips

Know More About Insulin!

Dr. Sunita Sayammagaru 90% (244 ratings)
MBBS, MRCGP ( UK), Diploma in Diabetes (UK), DFSRH (UK), DRCOG (UK), CCT (UK)
Endocrinologist, Hyderabad
Know More About Insulin!

We hear about it in relation to weight, energy levels and diabetes, but what exactly is its schtick and how does it affect our body functioning? Insulin is one of the great discoveries of modern medicine and it instantly led to lives being saved. The first [diabetes] patient was injected with insulin in 1922 – it's one of the great wonder drugs and [without it] those type 1 diabetes patients would all die.

Basically, insulin is a hormone that's produced by beta cells in the pancreas and prompts our cells to take up glucose (from ingested carbohydrates) from the bloodstream. If you don't have enough insulin, the glucose stays in your bloodstream, which reduces the energy made in your body.

Most carbohydrates contain a type of sugar known as glucose. After we finish eating, the carbohydrates break down into smaller sugar molecules called glucose inside the digestive tract. The pancreas is about 6 inches long and sits across the back of the abdomen, behind the stomach. The head of the pancreas is on the right side of the abdomen and is connected to the duodenum (the first section of the small intestine) through a small tube called the pancreatic duct. This gland produces a hormone named Insulin. When the glucose molecules are released into our bloodstream, this insulin helps the cells throughout our body to soak up these simple sugar molecules and use them for providing the body with energy. Now that our base is clear, let’s move on to the importance of insulin in our body.

Why it is important?

Insulin helps our body to absorb glucose and provides the body with all the energy to do what it does. Another really important task that insulin does is balance the glucose levels in our blood. As soon as there is extra glucose in our blood-stream, insulin gives a signal in which the excess glucose is stored in the liver for future use, i.e, in situations when blood sugar drops and the body needs an extra energy boost.

Occurrence of diabetes

In a certain turn of events, when the body refuses to use the insulin properly or in worse cases, the body fails to produce enough insulin, diabetes mellitus occurs. Diabetes can be of two kinds:

  • Type 1 - In this case, the immune system destroys all the insulin producing cells, thereby, ceasing the production of insulin. As such, insulin injections are mandatory to maintain blood sugar levels.

  • Type 2 - In this case, the body does not respond well to the instructions of insulin and the sugar level in the body is not regulated. The body in turn produces a lot of insulin in a desperate attempt to improve blood sugar levels. The patients can turn the situation over by changing their food habits and lifestyle and taking certain medications.

For people taking insulin treatment, it is good to note that insulin can be of rapid acting type, short-acting type, long-acting type and intermediate-acting type.

Other Functions of Insulin

In addition to the regulation of glucose, insulin also plays a role in other areas of the body. It may be involved in all of the following functions to:

  • Modify the activity of enzymes and the resulting reactions in the body.
  • Manage synthesis of lipids by uptake into fat cells, which are converted to triglycerides.
  • Build muscle following sickness or injury via the transportation of amino acids to the muscle tissue, which is required to repair muscular damage and increase size and strength. It helps to regulate the uptake of amino acids, DNA replication and the synthesis of proteins.
  • Manage breakdown or protein and lipids due to changes in fat cells.
  • Uptake of amino acids and potassium into the cells that cannot take place in the absence of insulin.
  • Enhance learning and memory of the brain functions.
  • Manage excretion of sodium and fluid volume in the urine.

It is evident that insulin plays a number of essential roles in the body, including the management of sugar levels in the blood and many other areas.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

4239 people found this helpful

Know Everything About Insulin!

Dr. Anirban Biswas 91% (1242 ratings)
PGP In Diabetologist, Fellowship in Non-Invasive Cardiology, MD - Medicine, MBBS
Endocrinologist, Delhi
Know Everything About Insulin!

The first and the most important thing to be cleared is what exactly insulin is. Now we all are well accustomed with the fact that we get the energy to do what we do by eating the food we eat. So how exactly is all this energy generated? That is exactly what is going to be explained in the briefest way possible.

Most carbohydrates contain a type of sugar known as glucose. After we finish eating, the carbohydrates break down into smaller sugar molecules called glucose inside the digestive tract. Pancreas is a gland, which is located somewhere behind the stomach and is the source of all the endocrine functioning. This gland produces a hormone named Insulin. When the glucose molecules are released into our bloodstream, this insulin helps the cells throughout our body to soak up these simple sugar molecules and use them for providing the body with energy. Now that our base is clear, let’s move on to the importance of insulin in our body.

Why it is important?

Insulin helps our body to absorb glucose and provides the body with all the energy to do what it does. Another really important task that insulin does is balance the glucose levels in our blood. As soon as there is extra glucose in our blood-stream, insulin gives a signal in which the excess glucose is stored in the liver for future use, i.e, in situations when blood sugar drops and the body needs an extra energy boost.

Occurrence of diabetes

In a certain turn of events, when the body refuses to use the insulin properly or in worse cases, the body fails to produce enough insulin, diabetes mellitus occurs. Diabetes can be of two kinds:

  • Type 1 - In this case, the immune system destroys all the insulin producing cells, thereby, ceasing the production of insulin. As such, insulin injections are mandatory to maintain blood sugar levels.

  • Type 2 - In this case, the body does not respond well to the instructions of insulin and the sugar level in the body is not regulated. The body in turn produces a lot of insulin in a desperate attempt to improve blood sugar levels. The patients can turn the situation over by changing their food habits and lifestyle and taking certain medications.

For people taking insulin treatment, it is good to note that insulin can be of rapid acting type, short-acting type, long-acting type and intermediate-acting type. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.

3660 people found this helpful

Insulin - All You Need to Know

Dr. Rakesh Kakkar 92% (3717 ratings)
Practical Course In Diabetology, Post Graduate Course In Diabetology, MBBS
Endocrinologist, Jammu
Insulin - All You Need to Know

The first and the most important thing to be cleared is what exactly insulin is. Now we all are well accustomed with the fact that we get the energy to do what we do by eating the food we eat. So how exactly is all this energy generated? That is exactly what is going to be explained in the briefest way possible.

Most carbohydrates contain a type of sugar known as glucose. After we finish eating, the carbohydrates break down into smaller sugar molecules called glucose inside the digestive tract. Pancreas is a gland, which is located somewhere behind the stomach and is the source of all the endocrine functioning. This gland produces a hormone named Insulin. When the glucose molecules are released into our bloodstream, this insulin helps the cells throughout our body to soak up these simple sugar molecules and use them for providing the body with energy. Now that our base is clear, let’s move on to the importance of insulin in our body.

Why it is important?

Insulin helps our body to absorb glucose and provides the body with all the energy to do what it does. Another really important task that insulin does is balance the glucose levels in our blood. As soon as there is extra glucose in our blood-stream, insulin gives a signal in which the excess glucose is stored in the liver for future use, i.e, in situations when blood sugar drops and the body needs an extra energy boost.

Occurrence of diabetes

In a certain turn of events, when the body refuses to use the insulin properly or in worse cases, the body fails to produce enough insulin, diabetes mellitus occurs. Diabetes can be of two kinds:

  • Type 1 - In this case, the immune system destroys all the insulin producing cells, thereby, ceasing the production of insulin. As such, insulin injections are mandatory to maintain blood sugar levels.

  • Type 2 - In this case, the body does not respond well to the instructions of insulin and the sugar level in the body is not regulated. The body in turn produces a lot of insulin in a desperate attempt to improve blood sugar levels. The patients can turn the situation over by changing their food habits and lifestyle and taking certain medications.

For people taking insulin treatment, it is good to note that insulin can be of rapid acting type, short-acting type, long-acting type and intermediate-acting type. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.

2053 people found this helpful

Why Insulin Is Important?

Dr. Jagruti Parikh 90% (322 ratings)
M.D. Internal Medicine
Endocrinologist, Mumbai
Why Insulin Is Important?

Insulin is a hormone that is important for metabolism and utilization of energy from the ingested nutrients like carbohydrate, fat and protein. Insulin is synthesized in significant quantities only in beta cells in the pancreas. It is secreted primarily in response to elevated blood concentrations of glucose. Insulin thus can regulate blood glucose and the body senses and responds to rise in blood glucose by secreting insulin. 

Other stimuli like sight and taste of food, nerve stimulation and increased blood concentrations of other fuel molecules, including amino acids and fatty acids, also promote insulin secretion. Insulin has several broad actions including: 

  1. It causes the cells in the liver, muscle, and fat tissue to take up glucose from blood and convert it to glycogen that can be stored in the liver and muscles 
  2. Insulin also prevents the utilization of fat as an energy source. In absence of insulin or in conditions where insulin is low glucose is not taken up by body cells, and the body begins to use fat as an energy source 
  3. Insulin also controls other body systems and regulates the amino acid uptake by body cells 
  4. It has several other anabolic effects throughout the body as well Since insulin controls the central metabolic processes, failure of insulin production leads to a condition called diabetes mellitus. 

There are two major types of diabetes – type 1 and type 2. 

Type 1 diabetes, occurs when there is no or very low production of insulin from the pancreatic beta cells. Patients with Type 1 diabetes mellitus depend on external insulin (most commonly injected subcutaneously) for their survival. 

In type 2 diabetes, mellitus the demands of insulin are not met by the amount produced by the pancreatic beta cells. This is termed insulin resistance or ''relative'' insulin deficiency. These patients may be treated with drugs to reduce their blood sugar or may eventually require externally supplied insulin if other medications fail to control blood glucose levels adequately.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3243 people found this helpful

Insulin Check

Dr. Jagruti Parikh 90% (322 ratings)
M.D. Internal Medicine
Endocrinologist, Mumbai
Insulin Check

Always maintain a diary of your sugar readings for your doctor. This will help him adjust your insulin doses and prevent low sugar attacks.

1 person found this helpful

Tip for Insulin storage

Dr. Neeraj Kumar Singh 90% (139 ratings)
MD - Internal Medicine, CCMD(Diabetology), PG Course in Diabetology, ADVANCED CERTIFICATE COURSE IN DIABETES
Diabetologist, Dehradun
Tip for Insulin storage
Insulin storage-All insulin needs to be kept at temperatures lower than 25°C, ideally between 2 and 6°C . Normal room temperatures are below 25°C but they can be warmer in the summer. Therefore any insulin you are not currently using should be stored in the fridge – throughout the year. Don’t put it in – or too close to – the freezer compartment, as the insulin may be damaged. Any insulin that has been out of the fridge for 28 days or more should be discarded.
18 people found this helpful

DELAYING INSULIN INITIATION

Dr. Neeraj Kumar Singh 90% (139 ratings)
MD - Internal Medicine, CCMD(Diabetology), PG Course in Diabetology, ADVANCED CERTIFICATE COURSE IN DIABETES
Diabetologist, Dehradun
DELAYING INSULIN INITIATION
For patients with type 2 diabetes treated with metformin, add-on sitagliptin is associated with a lower risk for insulin initiation than add-onsulphonylureas like glimepride, according to a study published in diabetes, obesity and metabolism.
22 people found this helpful

Common Insulin Alternatives

Dr. Rakesh Sharma 88% (11 ratings)
DDF, FCCP, MD , MBBS
General Physician, Delhi
Common Insulin Alternatives

Insulin is the most common treatment prescribed for people affected with diabetes. Diabetes is condition where high amounts of glucose prevail in the blood for an extended period of time. However, there are some drugs that offer an alternative to insulin in treating diabetes, which are:

  1. Liraglutide: Liraglutide is a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) drug that causes the body to release greater amounts of insulin so as to facilitate the movement of glucose from the blood to the cells. People with type 2 diabetes generally use this treatment. It slows the digestion process and can cause symptoms of headache and nausea. 
  2. Pramlintide: It's an artificially produced version of amylin. It is taken by both type 1 and type 2 diabetic patients, facilitates slower digestion of food and therefore, controls release of sugar in the blood. It can cause tiredness and nausea.
  3. Dulaglutide:This treatment is for people affected with type 2 diabetes and it is administered once a week. It causes more insulin to be released and pass the glucose to the cells. It can cause loss of appetite, nausea and abdominal cramps as side effects.
  4. Albiglutide: This treatment facilitates pancreas to release insulin and limits the glucagon hormone production. It is used by type 2 diabetes patients who have not taken well to other treatments. The side effects are skin reaction, respiratory tract infection and nausea.
  5. Exenatide: It is a drug that causes pancreas to release insulin that facilitates movement of glucose to cells. It is a treatment for type 2 diabetes and it restricts release of glucagon in the body. The possible side effects are acidity, constipation and vomiting.

Related Tip: "Living Well with Type 2 Diabetes"

3310 people found this helpful

Insulin Dependent Diabetes

Dr. Ramneek Gupta 90% (19029 ratings)
DHMS (Diploma in Homeopathic Medicine and Surgery)
Homeopath, Ludhiana
Insulin Dependent Diabetes

Always try to eat 3 proper meals when you are on insulin with light snacks in between. Try to eat one slice of garlic every morning empty stomach as this not only decrease cholesterol but also decreases your blood sugar levels.

3 people found this helpful

Afrezza (Insulin Inhalation)

Dr. A.A Khan 93% (1011 ratings)
MBBS,CCA,DCA,AASECT,FPA,AAD,F.H.R.SM.I.M.S
General Physician, Gorakhpur
Afrezza (Insulin Inhalation)

Afrezza - the only inhaled insulin for diabetes.

Afrezza® is an inhaled human insulin indicated to help improve glycemic control in adults with diabetes mellitus.

 

Afrezza is a rapid-acting, inhaled insulin used to control high blood sugar in adults with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. The product consists of a dry formulation of human insulin delivered from a small and portable inhaler. 

Administered at the beginning of a meal, afrezza dissolves rapidly upon inhalation to the lung and delivers insulin quickly to the bloodstream. Peak insulin levels are achieved within 12–15 minutes of administration. Afrezza is available in 4-unit and 8-unit single dose cartridges of insulin powder that can be used, as prescribed by a health care professional, in combination with other diabetes medications to achieve target blood sugar levels. For afrezza doses exceeding 8 units, patients may use a combination of 4 unit and 8 unit cartridges. Other sizes of cartridges are being considered. The disposable inhaler can be used for up to 15 days, should be kept in a clean, dry place with the mouthpiece cover on and may be wiped with a clean, dry cloth if needed.

Limitations of use

Do not use afrezza as a substitute for long-acting insulin; 

Afrezza must be used in combination with long-acting insulin in patients with type 1 diabetes.

Do not use afrezza to treat diabetic ketoacidosis. Afrezza is not recommended in patients who smoke or who have recently stopped smoking.

Important safety information for afrezza

Warning: risk of acute bronchospasm in patients with chronic lung disease

 

Acute bronchospasm has been observed in patients with asthma and COPD using afrezza. Afrezza is contraindicated in patients with chronic lung disease such as asthma or copd. Before initiating afrezza, perform a detailed medical history, physical examination, and spirometry (FEV1) to identify potential lung disease in all patients.

Do not use afrezza if you have problems with your lungs, such as asthma or COPD. Do not use afrezza during a low blood sugar reaction (hypoglycemia). If you are allergic to any of the ingredients in afrezza, do not use afrezza as this may cause a significant and severe allergic reaction. 

 

Resources:-

Afrezza patient starter kit

type diabetes
5 people found this helpful