Basal insulin only (Lantus or Levemir), how well is it working for you

I never really was able to bring my BG under control with long acting insulin by itself. When it became time to start insulin I went almost immediately to multiple daily injections using Levemir for basal and Novolog for mealtime or basal insulin.

I never really experienced using Levemir as my only insulin and I was wondering how good the bg control for basal only users can be.

There's not much chance that I will ever be able to treat my D using only Lantus or Levemir but a lot of folks may be considering it and it would be good it someone can relate their practical experiences.


Hi Gary,

I use Lantus along with metformin xl and it seems to be working fine. How much are you on for the long lasting? Are you on metformin too?



Hi Sabrina, I'm on a pump so I don't use long lasting. I used Metformin for years before I started both long acting (Levemir) and short acting (Novolog)for MDI. When I started MDI I stopped the Metformin and since I started with my pump I use Novolog only.

I did the Levemir/Metformin combination for a short while but was never successful. I went almost directly to MDI

The only time I can do with Levemir alone is when I go with zero carb days.

Levemir does a great job for me, as long as I don't eat any carbs.

As soon as I consume Carbs, I need Novolog to control it. And I have figured out that 1 unit takes care of 8 grams of carbs for me.

I am on Levemir and 2 oral pills. My A1C was 7.8, then increased insulin down to 7. My hope is my next A1C is in the 6’s. Spring will be here soon, snow gone, so I can increase my exercise outside.I try and stick to my meal plan, my husband does not always bring the best food choices into the house. We love vegetables ,this helps. I see my Dr. In a few weeks.

It doesn't work for me. I need both basal and bolus insulin. I don't think it works that well by itself, unless you catch it early and start using insulin as soon as your body needs it.

They aren't really meant to be used alone in any case, that's why treatment used to consist of a mixed insulin, which had both basal and bolus insulins together. You had to roll the insulin to mix before injecting or you could get too much of the rapid acting insulin and have hypoglycemia, sometimes in the middle of the night, which was extremely dangerous. Having experienced blackouts from this, I would never recommend mixed insulins, or using just one or the other type.

I'm glad we have newer better insulins, because those lows were dangerous, and the constant headaches from yo-yoing almost all the time was hard to deal with.

We have it much better than my grandmother ever did!