Carb : Insulin mismatch?


Are you matching your carb intake to your insulin intake? What is your specific and individual insulin sensitivity and carb ratio – do you know?

If you are injecting insulin either long or short acting or both these “numbers” are important to know.

What complicates things further is that sometimes they are different for different times of the day as well as different states of health.

Injecting insulin is a very tricky business if you are aiming for “perfect” control – i.e. glucose between 5-9 mmol/l (this is my personal goal post). Overshooting and under dosing happens most days.

In order to try and get it right most of the time it helps a lot to KNOW your body and your numbers. So what is carb ratio ? This is the amount of insulin you specifically need to cover 15 g of carbs – that is roughly one slice of bread. Most patients are in the region of 1-2 u units per 15 g/one slice bread. Children/babies however are more usually 1 u for 30g or more and in terms of sensitivity 1 u dropping sugars by 10 mmol/l (vs adults usually 1 unit dropping sugars by 2-3 mmol/l).

This information/calculation needs to be worked out by yourself, your doctor as well as your dietician. It is really important to understand and apply this in order to get better control.

Then bear in mind that on sick days you usually need a bit more. When exercising hard a little less (sometimes a lot less). And so it goes : hot weather, cold weather, different foods, stress, etc all influence the sugars and how they react to insulin.

Don’t be caught high or low this festive season – stay jolly and even.

 

 

 

 

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