Type II new to Insulin

Hello everyone! I am a type II diabetic, and have been since 1990. I am one of those Type II's that does not fit the mold of mainstream media. I was diagnosed while in the Marine Corps and coincidentally also in the best shape of my life. I have never been overweight, and never had bad eating habits, however the family history has Type II's in every generation. Spending any time indoors makes me completely mental - I am into just about anything and everything as long as I am outside. From hiking, hunting, fishing, four wheeling, jet skiing, boating, etc etc.

Up until 9 days ago I was on oral medications only. Over the past 12 months my AIC went from a 6.1 up to a 14.2! This did not happen overnight, but because I was always so controlled on the oral medications I made the mistake of not checking my BG regularly. Long story short, my pancreas stopped functioning and I went on Insulin. I am taking Humalog and Lantis for a TDD of between 45 - 50 units per day.

My fasting numbers are now in the 80's and my after meal numbers are usually between 90 and 110. I attribute that success 100% to this forum. When I was advised that I would be starting Insulin I spent several days reading and reading until my eyes bled - who knew there was so much to learn? Myself and my endo are still dialing in the insulin, but I think that I am doing pretty well for using it less than 2 weeks - so I thought I would drop in here and give you all a huge Thank You! This forum has a huge wealth of information, and from REAL diabetics - that is very difficult to find.

I will be continuing to read and post as things come up, but I really want you all to know that this site really does help people, and I can attest to that! Thanks Again for such a great place!

fantastic DevilDog! so many type2s when starting insulin mistakenly feel it's been because somehow they have "failed". Glad you've found so much help here, and welcome again to the community.

That is a really great story. As a type 2, I started insulin 2 years ago. As Marie said, moving to insulin is not a personal failure, looking back, I now see that my efforts to control before insulin represented a personal success. I think you should too. And it sounds like you have already made huge progress with the insulin (it took me a fair number of weeks to get adjusted). Welcome.

Outstanding job! I want to second what Marie said about insulin not being a failure for a T2. I have made this analogy several times before, for a type 2 insulin does not mean you have lost the battle, it means you have brought in a new weapon to fight the war. A weapon that will help win the war.

I was like you when I was prescribed insulin I became totally obsessed with learning. This site is what I found most useful, not only for the wealth of knowledge but also for the enormous amount of support. I still come here several times a week (sometime daily) for those reasons.

This thing called diabetes is a never ending foe. My impression is that you are not the type that's going to let it get the best of you.

BTW I like your picture.


Thanks for the replies folks! When I first heard the news that I would be starting on Insulin; honestly, I just thought it was the next phase of fighting the disease. I have never thought of "going on Insulin" a failure, and NO ONE with T2 who lives a decent lifestyle and takes their oral medications should.

At Christmas dinner tonight I fired up my Android, entered in the food I was going to eat, and dialed in the right amount of insulin. I excused myself to do the injection and came back to wait for the festivities to start. Some of the family didn't even know I was on it and were all of a sudden "awwee...really? You have to take shots! That must be horrible!" I explained that it was just another treatment to keep me alive and healthy. They really thought that I had to load needles, stick myself with a 3" needle, and almost cry in pain..LOL! I showed them my pens and the needle that I use and they were shocked. Needless to say the conversation this evening was all about Diabetes Type 2 education to my family. It was actually cool explaining to them "what" the disease was and how I am fighting against it. My wife just won a battle with Cancer, so it was a nice relief to her to be out of the spotlight as well. She told me when we got home that she learned new things tonight as well!

DO NOT let this disease get you down folks - it is what it is. Deal with it, beat it and enjoy your lives. I have been fighting this B*&^h for 22 years and I will still enjoy all of the activities I like, eat well, and hopefully live to an old age. This is not a death sentence if you take the time to educate yourself, your family and friends, and incorporate all of that knowledge into a support plan.

Again - Thanks for the replies! All of you fellow diabetics have a GREAT holiday season, and take care of yourselves. Keep your head up and fight to win!


I like the way your handling taking insulin. I see that you're counting cards and calculating bolus injections. Are you also taking a basal insulin such as Levemir or Lantus.

I love the way you educated your family and got the "aawwe" factor out of the way. I still get it from friends and co-workers and I tell them to not feel sorry for me because I'm doing just fine.


Well put, Gary and Merry Christmas to you as well. To the second Gary, you do know that counting cards is illegal in Vegas? (Sorry, couldn't resist).

They really thought that I had to load needles, stick myself with a 3" needle, and almost cry in pain..LOL!

For these occasions I have one of the old glass U-40 syringes that used Luer-Lock needles, that they gave me when I was discharged from the hospital as a kid. Never actually used it (always used plastic syringes) but it was "standard issue" back then.

My brother and I are both Vietnam vets, and we are both insulin dependent, my brother was able to take oral meds for about 7 years before becoming insulin dependent, I tried oral drugs but they where ineffective and I was placed on insulin after becoming very ill (I was 34 years old, my brother was 55). We are both 5' 11" and weighed about 150 lbs when we started experiencing high BG. No one else in our family including our parents or children have Type1 or Type2 diabetes. We also have no heart problems, high lipids, or any other Bete's related health issues and both of use are also Cancer survivors...)

I bet you have climbed steeper hills...the Bete's is nothing...;-)

Interesting response. I am one who does not accept the gene fracas as being a sole/major important factor in Type 2. Yes, I can see where genetic issues can acerbate the problem, make some bodies more resistant to this fracas but in no way account for all the numbers and growth of T2. They may account for some of the tough issues of pancreas aging and dropping insulin or pancrease and its islets doing a Rip van winkle and going to sleep and some other key medical mis fires.

My read is that after second world war and from 1970's on science and agriculture improved grain, rice and corn production and calorie content and made all sorts of super refined foods ( nee -high test fuel) and now available 24/7. In fact prior to this improvements , there was serious concerns that the world food production was not sufficient to stop massive starvation.

Next we dropped exercise loading massively - computers, lap tops, cars and appliances and couch potato entertainment.

The hunter gatherer gene/digestion system has not kept pace with these latest changes and improvements in science and I am told is still running with all its century old system with very little gene/organization change after thousands of years.

Under this regimine, a super efiicient digestive system designed to run along the bottom of food quality/supply and prevent starvation has no tools to prevent glucose overload and saturation when running on our current low exercise 24/7 high test fuel. Good luck there. Explosion and growth of T2 numbers world wide would seem to support a different view than is currently held.

Greetings. I find it interesting and "funny" that we can be so controlled, and "poof" we are not. I was on two orals for 11 years, and then needed to go on Humalog on a sliding scale to be used with cortizone for my arthritis. It worked so well, I decided to ask for it full time. It has kept my "D" more under control and I feel 150% better, So I guess we have to change with our bodies and the way it is dealing with the "D". I learned much here too, and took much to my doc and diabetic educator,,,now they are members too. Hang in there folks this doesn't define you, it's just part of your life,

Awesome! Hiking is my method of choice for exercise to keep my BG under control.

Wow. I am overwhelmed with deja vú reading this thread. Often I feel as though I am preaching to the choir. This time, I'm listening to the choir. Practically everything here I have said somewhere, sometime, to somebody. Feels like old home week.

Like all of you who commented here, I get very plugged in by the all-too-prevalent mindset that says insulin use is a last resort, or an admission of failure. How absurd! It ought to be just the opposite. If you can't achieve control by other means, and you have this incredibly powerful therapy available, it's insane not to take advantage of it. That's how I see it, anyway.

If you had a broken leg, would you put off getting a cast a long as possible? Would you consider it a last resort, or view the need for it as failure? Of course not! You'd want it RIGHT NOW, the sooner to begin healing.

For the record: I have been T2 for almost 20 years. For most of that time I controlled it casually and somewhat haphazardly with exercise, oral meds, and a (semi) reasonable diet. About a year ago I realized that my A1c was creeping upward no matter what I did so I began an intensive course of self study. One of the first conclusions I reached was that insulin was a big part of the answer. Fortunately, I have a really terrific PCP who didn't need much convincing.

For whatever it's worth, I agree with jims about the etiology of T2. A century ago the average American consumed around 4 pounds of sugar a year. Today (according to the USDA), it's more than 150 pounds per person per year, and that's not counting the 50-plus pounds that are concealed in packaged process foods. So, we eat 30 or 40 times the sugar our great-grandparents did, and diabetes is spreading at epidemic rates. Could there be a connection? Nahhh . . . .

We evolved eating protein and vegetables. We didn't even eat grains in any significant quantity until agriculture was invented, and that's only been about 10,000 years. We simply aren't engineered to process large amounts of carbohydrate. Evolution just doesn't work that quickly.

Okay. I'll shut up now.

Wow, your post really made me think about things, David. You are right, 100% right, and who would know better than a diabetic? 12 years ago, I said I wouldn't give myself a shot, and it was only until I could see that it was a pen, and the help of an excellent diabetic educator that I said, please please can I have my insulin. I wonder how much better I would be doing now if I would have said yes right away, or at least been more open to it? Somehow, it appears that if we are on insulin, we are on our way down hill. Your analogy was great, I am going to use it when I try to explain to others about my insulin, Thanks,

Yes, exactly. I wish I had done this years ago. I hear you, loud and clear.

Amazing. I ended up at a point where I was 13.3 A1C and caught my liver misbehaving badly. My BG would not drop sub 184.

I started insulin - humalog 75/25 about 7 years ago.

Afer changing how I took metformin to arrest the liver monkey shines and work my diet ( modified mediterranean style diet - 1200 calories a day
as well as 2 miles walking a day).

Today, my pancreas after 26 years stopped its rip van winkle act and went back to working and I ended up yanking the starlix, actos and the 75/25 humalog. I now use humalog lispro - 2 units for every meal and I stopped my lantus which is very effective correcting the basil insulin.

My Doctor said I had a non standard T2 case that did not match any of his playbook and recommended practice.

Things are slowly changing and folks are beginning to realize the human digestive ssystem is complex and the Liver, and other hormones need checking and possible boosting and control and that always foocusing on the pancreas and insulin to the exclusion of the other factors for T2 is neither wise nor effective.

As for the oral meds - throw those in the ashcan. I wish I had been put on the liquid insulin far earlier. The oral crap forces one to eat to prevent lows while the liquid insulin is totally flexible and can be easily sized for the carb loading of a meal. Properly done with sufficient exercise, one does not gain weight.

You are doing great a TDD of 45 to 50 is great not that much insulin resistance. And your blood sugars are fantastic.

I have been following this with great interest. This is my second post to his site. I am an 18 year type 2, on metfrormin,amaryl, and levimer. My last A1c was 7.9, previously 6.9 - 7.9 over 2 years. I am frustrated with my numbers. I swim , walk and do some type of exercise almost daily. I will see my endo next week, hoping to go on something ? Insulin before meals. Type 2 runs in my family, plus I was a micrpremature infant, wt. 1 lb. 14 oz. 60 years ago. Nancy

Some docs, including endos are reluctant to put people on insulin because they don't have total control over anything. So make sure your endo knows that this is something that YOU want to do and WANT to get your "D" under control. Your numbers sound high, and if you are doing what you should maybe a sliding scale insulin before meals would do you good. Ask him/her about it and see what they say?

You can get all three of these books from Amazon:

Richard K. Bernstein, Dr. Bernstein's Diabetes Solution, 4th. ed. (New York: Little, Brown and Company, 2011)

Gary Scheiner, Think Like A Pancreas, (Boston: Da Capo Press, 2011)

John Walsh et. al., Using Insulin, (San Diego: Torrey Pines Press, 2003)

Notwithstanding the advice you may (or may not) receive from your health care team, it will be YOU who makes the day-to-day decisions involving management and control. You should read all three of these books if you're going to use insulin. They will give you the essential knowledge base you need in order to manage this very powerful tool effectively. (Actually, every diabetic should read the first one, insulin or no insulin, but that's a different discussion.)

Finally, tuD, these forums and the chat room are an immensely helpful knowledge bank to draw on when it comes to actual real-world experience of those who have been here before you.