Is Anyone Else on 500mg per day of Metformin?

This is the second doctor who has me on 500mg per day of Metformin. I am using the Extended Release form now and am tolerating it better. But if I eat carbs of any kind beyond vegetables, I get sick.

I read a dosage under 1000mg is ineffective.

I asked my doctor that and he poo pooed it off.

Is anyone else on 500mg of Metformin, and did it help you?

When I started out with this journey I was on 500mg a day and that proved to be ineffective. I was changed to 500mg twice a day, morning and night. Ineffective for me again. I am now on 1000mg twice a day, morning and nite, This has proven to be effective for me. I wont tell ya about my trials with Actos, Januvia, and Janumet, all failures. I went through the upset stomach, the “back door trots” etc. But I found that the longer I was on it, the more I became adjusted. I rarely Have those problems now and I have a duodenal Ulcer. Maybe your Dr. is trying the same as mine did, but I think I would have rather just had them put me on the higher dose to begin with and got it over! I would rather have had to decrease then go through what I did. I know several on here take the ER and they have had great results with thier dosage being from 500 on up. I take XL. Good luck with your journey and I’m sure you will get some great help from other!.

I take 2 of these each day and seems to be working fine. Occasionally I do forget the one in the evening and never have too major of an issue the next day. Might work.

When I first started on metformin several years ago, I was helped by 500 mg a day, that is, it worked to control my blood sugar. When I began seeing an endo she put me on 1000 twice a day, even though my blood sugar was controlled by less, she said to protect my pancreas. I guess that meant to keep my pancreas from burning out pumping out the tons of insulin needed to deal with my insulin resistance. So yes, I would say if 500 helps and is tolerable, it would be worth trying. Keep testing to see.

By the way, after a few years on metformin with no problems, I have, for the past few years, been having diahrrea every few days, not every day, but 3 to 4 days a week, where I race to the bathroom several times a morning. I had not realized what was causing it, even had my gall bladder tested and removed 2 years ago (I did have major stones so that was ok) but the diahrrea remained and has to this day. After reading your posts about it I realized it was probably a new side effect of the metformin. Fortunately I work at home so it’s not an embarrassment (my heart ached for you), but it is annoying and time-wasting. The only up-side is we keep a crossword puzzle book in the bathroom and I get a lot of them done!

Hi Twixcookie:

I, too, am on 500 of metformin. I believe my internist put me on it to shut me up because I was complaining that I couldn’t manage my diabetes on exercise and diet alone anymore (not unless I wanted to eat 0 carbs! and run 5 miles everyday). When I finally went to an endo, he put me on Byetta, which has been managing my sugars WAY more effectively. He still kept me on the metformin, but I see him again on Thursday, so we’ll most likely talk about that. I, too, had horrible diarrhea from the metformin when I ate anything resembling a refined carb.

I have my gall bladder out, so that was an issue as well - the first time I ate a Burger King fry after my cholecystecomy, I almost lost it!

If you want to prove to your doctor that it is ineffective, this is what I did. I tested six-eight times a day. You can really see where your diet is controlling you that way. When you keep a food log (I know, I know) and test, the proof is right there and cannot be denied.

When I showed my endo that my fastings even on Met were over 125 plus sometimes 3 hours pp’s of 180 after eating a simple meal or one piece of candy over Christmas time, he knew to adjust me to something else to help out my pancreas.

The only reason I’m still on Metformin is to help out my liver as well.

Good luck!

I’ve been on 500mg a day since my diagnosis 18 months ago. It seems to be working well for me. My A1C at diagnosis was 12.1, and within six months of 500mg Metformin plus exercise, moderate low-carbing and losing about 30 lbs, I had my A1C down to 5.0. I don’t know how much of that was due to the Metformin and how much was the diet, exercise and weight loss. I never had the diarrhea everyone talks about, but for a couple of weeks I did have some major intestinal cramping and pain. That didn’t last long and hasn’t recurred. I take the regular Metformin, not the ER.

I’ve slacked off some with the low carb diet, and my last A1C (in September) was back up to 6.4. This Friday I’m having a new one done and if it’s still over 6 maybe I’ll ask my doctor about increasing the dose of Met … though my suspicion is that the higher number might be more because I ate too much junk over the holidays. At least I hope that’s the reason, because that would mean I can get the A1C back down by eating better. I have a huge fear of deteriorating to the point where Metformin doesn’t work anymore and I have to start trying other meds … Now that my insurance has gone to a very high deductible, I’m paying for everything out of pocket and that sucks but at least Metformin is still pretty cheap! I’ll stick with it as long as it keeps working.

I have been reading these posts and all of you have been very interesting responses. Metformin has proven to be good for some and other not so good. When will the doctors start leveling with people. I’m on 250 mg of Metformin, once a day. I will see in a short time of whether that has been sufficient. Individual differences makes all the difference in the world. No two diabetic handles his/her particular program the same way. I’m still working on the angle of carbs-protein-fat along with a walking routine to see how it acts with the metformin. We all keep testing everything and, like some of you had stated: “we almost have to be scientists with this.” That is exactly right. We are virtual slaves to a devasting disease.

Thanks Debbie, am glad you are doing well on the higher dosage, too!!

Having your gallbladder out can cause some diarrhea. But not in everyone, and some adjust, some don’t…
My doc plans on keeping me on 500mg forever, he said there is no reason to up the dose.

I think that is a good idea, and I am going to do it.
I eat about the same things every day. Just good proteins like fish, tofu, eggs, some chicken. No bread, no pasta, no rice, no potatoes, no corn products, no crackers. Lots of vegetables.

A small bowl of oatmeal with NO sugar made me have horrible cramps and diarrhea. I just can’t handle carbs.
Hey, I am paying for the Metformin out of pocket too! Walmart, Target, and some grocery stores have Metformin and the ER for about $4/ 30 tabs. The heck with the insurance companies.

But it should not be so ambiguous. Exercise has not decreased my blood sugar and is not lowering my weight very much. I am planning on getting up to where I exercise twice a day.

I exercise hard, I drink tons of water, and eat very low on the food chain. I couldn’t tell you what bread tastes like.

Sometimes, I am up all night with my job, and sleep comes first, before anything else.

Twix - I have the same life. That’s why I had to beg my internist for Metformin even. Yes, I think a sedentary lifestyle, and of course our eating habits, contributes to our T2, but eating so low-carb and exercising so much (which is what I did in my 30’s to control my diabetes) is not something I can keep up for the rest of my life. I can walk a couple miles a few times a week, but I can’t exercise twice a day anymore. Like you said, sleep is important, so is family, and so is a job. At a certain point, my pancreas not only needs help, but protection. You know?

It’s not ideal to be a slave to sleep but I find the added stress when I’m not getting enough good sleep makes a big difference in my #s. Right now I’ve kind of designed my whole life around minimizing stress (including sleep deprivation), on the theory that this will help me stay healthy enough to keep working as long as I’m alive … rather than work myself to death now in hopes of being able to afford retirement someday. If I keep working the way I used to I won’t live long enough to retire even if I had the money!

Anyway, my point is – sleep! I’m glad you’re making it a priority. It’s made a positive difference for me and I hope it does for you too.

I had a new A1C today and it’s back down to 5.7, so I’m happy with that. I noticed when I wrote it in my book that my last one was actually 6.1, not 6.4 – which just goes to show how much I was beating myself up over being above 6 – I was disappointed about the number going up, and ended up remembering it as even higher than it really was! Must remember: it’s Just A Number.

Anyway – I guess the 500mg dose is still doing it for me.

I’ve read your other posts concerning your problems with Metforim and really feel for you. When I was diagnosed in 8/08, my doctor started me on 500mg of the Extended Release. I had no side effects to it but after 6 weeks, my numbers never changed. He then put me on regular Metforim, 500mg, 2x a day. I’m waiting for my new A1c, but my meter readings did go down. It took me about 3 months to get used to the regular Metforim. I felt chained to the house for fear of not being near a bathroom at the right time. Luckily, I am now much better with this and only have problems 1 or 2 times a week. I hope the Extended Release works for you!

Dear sweetpotater.

Sounds like a wise plan

Sweetpotater - I so agree with you. Stress affects my #s more than the biggest piece of cake! I found this application called - you can put it on your iPod. It sounds like a scam, but they haven’t stalked me for buying the modules. It’s great for a quick pick me up break - meditative and peaceful - in the middle of the day or to help me get to sleep at night. That’s what I’m trying to focus on, too.

Teresa: Same here. That’s when I found a new endo who put me on Byetta, but kept me on the Metformin.

I am glad it is bringing your sugar down.
My doctor doesn’t want to put me on 1000 mg per day. He says my diabetes isn’t that bad. Lately, the highest readings I am getting are in the morning before breakfast, about 140. The rest of the day, it’s 100-110. My AIC was 6.0 and my fasting glucose was 110.
The XR is better for me so far. I have had some attacks, but nothing like what I went through before! I do know this, I cannot eat any carbs. A half of a cup of oatmeal, no sugar, no milk, sent me running.