Types of insulin- question

Hi everyone, I have a question or 2. I have been on a pump for the past almost 6 years and have NOT done well on it. Been taking Novolog thru the pump. I am going back to shots. Was on shots since I was 9 yrs. old. Before the pump I was on Humulin R & NPH and not over weight. Since being on the pump I have gained about 60-70 pounds! I have had numerous basal increases, which then I gain at least 10 pounds. Anyway, I need to know if anyone knows..... Does Novolog make you gain weight? The Dr.(PCP only) has me going to Novolog & Novolin N. I have never been on Novolin N before. Is it better then Humulin R & NPH? Any feed back is appreciated. This is going to happen in the next 3 weeks or so when my pump supplies run out.

We gain weight when our diabetes gets into better control.
All that glucose that you used to pee out. Is now glued to your gut and thighs.
It is the double edge to getting healthier.
I dont think the type of insulin has anything to do with it really. It is just a matter of the best timing that works for each person.
I got my CGM 6 months ago and My control is better than ever before in 25 years of diabetes.
I gained 12 lbs .
I'm working on losing it but as we all know it is harder when you have T1. I have risking low sugar etc.

You didn't say why the pump was not working for you.

I also have heard people switching to Log insulins and N. I really don't get that though because you have no basal insulin that way.

Your doctor is switching you from a intensive insulin regiment to a archaic mixed insulin protocol.

Don't give up on your pump, you can't blame all of your weight gain on the pump or insulin just take a walk through the mall or Wall-mart look at the world around you your pump/insulin is just a excuse. I lost 46 pounds when I started pumping and have never gained it back, managing my weight is just as hard as controlling my BG and the older I get the harder it is to keep from gaining weight.

I go to Weight Watchers with my wife almost every Saturday morning and there are 60+ other people there facing the same challenge, doctors, lawyers, housewife's, and truck drivers there are no social or economic boundary's. One thing I have learned at the meetings is most of us have something in common, emotionally food helps us to feel good and for a PWD there is even a physacal feel good...what a curse!!!!

You can get past this it takes a life style change...I know what a dirty trick we spend years getting along just fine and then we are forced out of or comfort zone.

I wish you the best...try to find some support in your community...there is just no substitute for real human interaction.

Humulin N is the same as NPH. So your regimen would be the same as R and NPH, just using Novolog instead of R. Personally, I would ask for a flatter basal insulin like Levemir or Lantus. You could always use some NPH to cover the dawn phenomenon if needed, which is what I would do if I ever went back on shots.

I have also had Type 1 since I was 9, and the weight thing can be very, very frustrating. I have gained weight on the pump, but a lot of that was because I could suddenly "eat whatever I wanted"—and did! I'd grown up always being on a restricted diet and it was like suddenly taking away all the rules ... not good.

However, I have found it EXTREMELY hard to lose weight, much harder than other people seem to find it. I tried Weight Watchers, followed their points to the letter AND exercised every day and lost about 5 pounds over a six-month period. A friend of mine who was also doing it, followed the points but didn't exercise, lost 30 pounds over that same period. Recently, I have started gaining weight even though I am exercising daily and eating healthy, which I find incredibly frustrating. I have been needing much more insulin over the past year than in the past, due to fluctuating insulin resistance (maybe related to hormones ...) so that may have a part to play, I am not sure.

I hope switching insulin regimens, along with eating healthy and exercise, help you lose weight! I have noticed a lot of women around 20-40 who have had Type 1 since they were a kid really struggle with the weight loss issue and also seem to have problems with (at least intermittent) insulin resistance. I have talked to quite a few online and some in person, too. Maybe we need to start a T1 woman weight loss group here. I know I personally find it very discouraging to try and lose weight with friends, only to have them lose weight 10x faster than me with (apparently) much less effort.

Thank you for the comment Jen! I should have said...I'm really allergic to both levemir & Lantus. They had me try both while waiting to go on the pump years ago. I hear ya about the weight gain! I really don't eat very much, just looking at food...I gain & my BG goes up. Crazy! I am gonna be 45 years old in a week & am going through all kinds of blood work now to see if my hormone levels are off.
Thank you again for your comments.

Thyroid levels can hugely affect weight gain and loss...?

Good you are getting things checked.

Thank you for your reply John. I am going off the pump due to losing my health insurance. I was vegetarian for nearly 20 years at 1 point and living in Montana, taking care of horses, dogs, etc... walk a lot daily. Maybe it's a type 1 female thing? Women in general have more body fat then men(with or w/o type 1)
I've never been a "sweets" eater, probably from getting it at 9 yrs. old.My physician has said several times I need to eat more, I am going to try to eat more & will have to now that I will be back on 3- 4 shots/day.All the very best to you and your family.

First, get your thyroid checked and checked thoroughly. An underactive thyroid will cause weight gain. Hashimoto's thyroiditis is an autoimmune condition which causes an underactive thyroid. It is commonly seen in T1s.

Second, if it's not your thyroid causing the weight gain, try and identify the cause. Are you going low? Are you eating more freely than you used to? I know when I went back on the pump, I definitely became less regimented with my eating and put on a few pounds. I loved the freedom of being able to eat things that were previously forbidden or at times when I wouldn't normally eat. I used to never snack, but on a pump, I found myself snacking a lot more. You have to be careful and balance that freedom.

Third, (and I cringe when I saw this), you note that you're 45. Well, for women, that's a huge turning point hormonally. Most of us start going through menopause around that time (or at least peri-menopause), which wreaks havoc on weight control.

Fourth, have you tried Symlin or Metformin? Some have had success loosing weight with these medications. It may be worth asking your endo about.

Fifth, while I don't think it's a crime against humanity to stop using a pump, be careful in doing so. If you go off the pump and immediately lose some weight (but sacrifice control), don't view that as success!!

Unfortunately, we women are really beaten down when it comes to our weight, and I know for me that issue can get all tangled up with my diabetes management. It's hard because treating my diabetes properly means that I might weigh a few more pounds than I would like. BUT, it also means that I will live longer and healthier. It's a balancing act.

See now I am completely the opposite as far as weight gain. I have been on MDI for 37 years, last month I started carb counting instead of sliding scale and so far the control has improved dramatically from A1C of 7.5 down to 6.9 and 6.1 in a matter of months, but it hasn't just been the A1C that has improved, I have lost about 10 pounds from not over doing the insulin and therefore having to overdo the carbs.
I was planning on switching to the new smaller omnipod pump, but posts like this are making me rethink the whole thing.

I do not have any health ins. anymore and can not afford the supplies, so going back to shots.Thanks for your reply Timothy.

Thanks for the comment earthling

Thank you for your comments and insights MyBustedPancreas, I appreciate it all. I get my thyroid checked every 6 mos. w/ routine blood work, so far so good. I don't go low...always high. can not eat all day and then check it and my sugar will be 130 or so. I have 6 different basal rates but that will all end soon, going on shots again. I really need to know if Novolog & Novolin N are a good combo to take( thats what the PCP has me going to since i have been on novolog on the pump) or like I was on before the pump Humulin R & Humulin NPH combo. I have heard from some people that they gained a lot on Novolog, so at this point I am thinking maybe it has been affecting me this way also....i don't know.I have asked several Endocrinologists about adding Symlin or Metformin to help me lose weight and they all said no. They say I go through so much insulin (300 cartridge every 2 days & covering w/ Novolog injections)because my type 1 has morphed into type 1 and 2 and I am very resistant to the insulin.I'm sure this has happened to others.
yes, i was thinking peri menopause! Just got my results back and the PCP says all is within range and it doesn't even look like I am in peri menopause yet. I am very confuse by all this.
I just did a 24hr. urine so she can check my "cortisol" levels, waiting to hear the results on that.
Again, thank you for all your input!

I just read the article, very interesting! Thank you so much Ellen for sharing w/ me!

It's worth a try Clare. Just b/c the pump has not been good for me, doesn't mean it won;t be good for you ;o)
My A1c on shots use to be 6.1 (about 7 years ago or so) Now I'm lucky to get a 7.7
I remember the days of "exchanges" think I'm gonna do that again as well.Thank you for your post.

I was on ULTRALENTE insulin before Lantus came to market and they still make it.I found that it worked very well for me. You can mix it with your regular or Log insulin too. If you are allergic to the others it might be worth a shot.
Esp since it will be much cheaper than Lantus or Levamir.

Obama care might just get you some insurance yet!
I have Insurance through the state of california Preexisting insurance program.
It isn't great but it pays 80% pump supplies and CGM testing etc.

I am glad to have it since I have no other option.

Ultralente (Humulin-U) was discontinued in the US by Eli Lilly and Company in 2005. The reason for discontinuation was declining use due to physicians favoring NPH...2005 was also the last year for pork insulin, beef insulin had been discontinued several years earlier because of the mad cow.

Good to know all this. Thank you. I was on Pork insulin at 9 yrs. old until I was switched to the humulin sometime around....I think I was about yrs old.I'm not sure, somewhere around then. Thanks for the information you guys.

Are you really sure to be allergic to lantus and levemir ? What did you see?
If that's the case, you had better stay on a pump: NPH and others require a lot of attention and "good and equal habits" to reach good A1C. You say 3-4 injections a day: I think they are too few to reach control.
I don't like this half-way device, but could be good for you Valeritas Vgo (link).
It's a sort of a mechanical pump, uses the same insulin for (fixed) basals and boluses, dosed at 2U at a time.
They say you have to change it daily, but perhaps lasts a little longer.

I don't like it because a pump is way better, but perhaps you could like it being simple and light.

You have to be lucky to have your basal match its insulin fixed hourly doses of 0.83 U/hr, 1.25 U/hr or 1.67 U/hr, but that basal would be really flat, without up and downs of NPH et simila

Here something "visual"


My pharmacy tells me that I can but Ultralente Humulin U for $88 available now. I can't believe he is selling 7 year old insulin.