Treating Diabetes without Insulin: What Are Your Options?
Type 2 diabetes is caused by the inability of the body to produce or effectively make use of its own insulin, which is a hormone that controls blood sugar level. In general, doctors often prescribe insulin drugs to diabetic patients. It is often believed that diabetics need insulin to live longer; however, the truth is that only a small percentage of patients with type 2 diabetes ever need it. There are many other treatment options for type 2 diabetes that include non-insulin therapies.
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Non-Insulin Diabetes Treatments
Before trying insulin treatment, you can consider making lifestyle changes and using non-insulin diabetes therapies. Here are the options:
Making Healthier Changes to Your Life: Take Healthy Diet
The traditional and long-lasting treatment option for type 2 diabetes is a healthy diet and exercise. A healthy diet helps control your blood sugar level, maintains a healthy weight and decrease the risk of other life-threatening diseases such as cardiovascular issues.
A diabetic person should aim to take a healthy diet of 1,800 calories per day. They should learn to keep a check on their calorie consumption and how to spread their carbs throughout the day. It is recommended that you work closely with your nutritionists to help you tailor your diet in order to control diabetes.
Be Active: Exercise for A Healthy You
Regular exercise can work to slow down the development of diabetes and make it easier to control. Besides keeping you active and reducing your weight, exercise works to manage your blood sugar level.
According to experts, diabetics should exercise for at least 20 minutes per day, or half an hour for at least five days of the week.
Enhance your Treatment Plan With Oral Medicines
These two therapies work well when followed on a regular basis. However, they can’t on their own bring about positive results; therefore, the doctors recommend the use of diabetic medication, Metformin, along with these lifestyle changes.
Metformin is an effective medicine that works by reducing the average blood sugar level by a percentage or two. It stimulates the liver to create fewer amounts of glucose and enhances the sensitivity of the body to insulin. Initially, the doctor will recommend you start with Metformin once or twice a day, depending on your age and health conditions. The dose is slowly increased in order to prevent side effects such as diarrhea and nausea.
Your doctor will suggest you take metformin along with a healthy diet and exercise. If there are no considerable changes in the first three months, they may consider adding other diabetic medicines. There are numerous oral non-insulin medications. These include Thiazolidinediones, Alpha-glucosidase inhibitors, Sulfonylureas, Incretin agents and Meglitinides. In general, these oral medicines work by stimulating your body’s pancreas to secrete more insulin.
Non-insulin Injectable Medicines
There are other safer options such as non-insulin injectable medicines that can be extremely effective for the treatment of type 2 diabetes.
- Exenatide is a popular non-insulin injectable medicine for diabetes that works to enhance the secretion of insulin. It works extremely well but may cause nausea for some patients. Ina few cases, the doctor may suggest taking a single injection per week, which is an extended-release version of the medicine.
- Another injectable diabetic drug is Liraglutide, which is prescribed to be taken once a day. It helps in triggering the formation of insulin and by keeping the weight in check.
Keep Your Blood Sugar in Check!
Depending on your diagnosis, your health care physician may prescribe to you a single or a combination of treatments. The doctor will check your health history and other important details, and put them into consideration before prescribing a treatment plan for you. In addition, you will need to make necessary eating and lifestyle changes in order to keep your weight in check and your blood sugar in level.
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