The Basics About Insulin

There are many different insulin drugs on the market today. Drug companies and pharmaceuticals continue to develop

and improve insulin drugs, not to mention alternative medicine or herbal-based drugs for diabetes.

The wide lineup of insulin drugs and devices to administer insulin provide great options for patients and physicians alike. However, not all insulins were created equal; a number of them have different chemical compositions. The types of insulin that you should take must correspond to the type of diabetes that you have.

Doctors recommend the type of drug based on your blood sugar level, your lifestyle, and your previous record with insulin (if there is any). Moreover, your insulin medication must take into consideration the food you eat, energy expended, stress, and other underlying conditions. Due to many factors that affect diabetes disease and the complications associated with it, choosing the right insulin is very important.

Insulin works by mimicking the functions of the pancreas. The pancreas continuously releases a small amount of insulin to your body. Thus, insulin medicines do the same, although there are variations in the effectivity, efficacy, and length of time to work.

According to the American Diabetes Association insulin works in stages.

  • Onset – it is the length of time that a patient needs to wait for insulin to hit the bloodstream and lower glucose in the blood.
  • Peak – It is the time when insulin effectiveness is at its “peak.”
  • Duration –it is the length of time of the effectiveness of insulin.

Although these are the three ways in which insulin works in the body it may vary from individual to individual. As discussed earlier, insulin comes in many different types. Here the 5 types of insulin.

  • Short-acting insulin
  • Rapid-acting insulin
  • Long-acting insulin
  • Intermediate-acting insulin
  • Mixed insulin

Whichever of these types is recommended by your doctor, it is very important to follow the detailed instruction on how to administer the medicine. You must also keep track of the time of its onset, peak, and duration. However, there is no exact time frame for all types of insulin as this varies from brand to brand. So, you must ask your physician on the time duration before it works, how long the peak effect is, and the period of effectiveness. This way you can anticipate your eating schedules and other activities.

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