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Metformin for insulin resistance: Kat Schrader’s story

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Metformin is a cornerstone of type 2 diabetes treatment and has long been used for its effectiveness in controlling blood sugar levels. However, its usefulness extends beyond this traditional role, offering potential benefits to a variety of people living with diabetes.

Investigating the experiences of people like Kat Schroeder reveals how metformin can be effective against type 1 diabetes as well as type 2 diabetes in some people.

Schroeder, a software engineer who has lived with Type 1 for the past 29 years and lives outside Washington, D.C., has been taking metformin to manage his diabetes for the past seven years.

She sat us down and shared her story.

Kat Schroeder smiles for the camera while sitting in the coach

Key Point:

  • Kat Schroeder, who lives with type 1 diabetes, incorporates metformin into her treatment to combat insulin resistance and improve blood sugar control without increasing the risk of hypoglycemia.
  • Despite initial hesitance due to common gastrointestinal side effects, Schroeder’s experience with metformin led to improved diabetes management and highlighted the drug’s efficacy beyond its traditional use in type 2 diabetes. Ta.
  • Metformin’s affordability and availability make it a viable option for many people, including those concerned about insurance coverage.

table of contents

What made you start taking metformin?

“Back in 2017, I noticed that my blood sugar (sugar) control and A1c (a measure of blood sugar control over the past 2-3 months) had plateaued, primarily due to insulin resistance. My doctor recommended that I start taking metformin to improve my diabetes management.”

Schroeder was initially hesitant to start taking the drug, but wanted to address his insulin resistance (a condition in which the body doesn’t use insulin efficiently) and high blood sugar levels, so he took a chance on metformin. I decided to give it.

Why did your doctor want you to take metformin?

Insulin resistance is commonly associated with symptoms such as: type 2 diabetessometimes. Genetic predisposition to this condition It occurs in some people with type 1 diabetes, especially those who have had diabetes for a long time or whose other factors, such as obesity or a sedentary lifestyle, contribute to the development of diabetes.

But many people don’t understand that people with type 1 diabetes also experience insulin resistance, and resources and medications aren’t always readily available.

Schroeder explains:

“Although we were working steadily on improving my blood sugar control and A1c, I was still getting high frequently and my A1c had plateaued at 7 seconds. [my healthcare provider] We recommended starting metformin to address this problem without increasing the risk of hypotension. ”

Merely increasing the amount of insulin you take in a day may increase your risk of hypoglycemia or hypoglycemia, but it does nothing to address the underlying cause of insulin resistance.

Therefore, many doctors now prescribe metformin and other diabetes drugs to patients with various types of diabetes to address the underlying causes of high blood sugar levels and insulin resistance.

Were there any side effects?

Schroeder experienced some of the typical side effects of taking metformin. she says,

“I had common digestive side effects, such as an upset stomach, increased bowel movements, and diarrhea. They seemed to go away after about six to eight weeks as my body got used to it.”

Learn more about some of the gastrointestinal side effects below. Can metformin cause diarrhea?

It is normal to experience side effects when taking metformin, especially when you first start taking the drug.

For some people, including Schroeder, the side effects can be severe enough to cause them to stop taking the drug.

She points out:

“I recently had to stop taking it for about four months, so when I started taking it again I felt a loss of appetite and nausea, but I’m hoping that will go away as well.”

See below for side effects. Metformin side effects (common and serious).

Has your diabetes control improved since taking metformin?

Schroeder says there’s no question that adding metformin has made diabetes management better and easier.

“In my CGM [continuous glucose monitor] Looking at the data, we can clearly see that blood sugar levels are more responsive to insulin. Instead of fighting for hours trying to chase a high because you didn’t bowl properly, you can usually achieve the high within a reasonable time frame. Also, there are fewer spikes overall. ”

Using metformin for diabetes management can improve blood sugar and A1c levels without increasing insulin intake.

Additionally, addressing the underlying causes of insulin resistance can also prevent excess weight gain in patients with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

See below for more information. Signs that metformin is working (or not).

How long have you been taking metformin? Are you still taking the medication?

Schroeder has been taking metformin steadily since 2017, with the exception of a few breaks. she says:

“I’m still taking it, and I plan on taking it in the future!”

Have you ever been surprised while taking metformin?

Schroeder says she didn’t know people with type 1 diabetes could take metformin.

“When I was prescribed it, I thought it was just a thing.” [people with type 2]but all [person with diabetes] You may end up dealing with insulin resistance for some reason. Metformin can be very helpful in solving that. Such perceptions persist among many physicians who are new to diabetes, and physician ignorance may need to be managed when seeking medical care. ”

Metformin is First approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) It was used to treat type 2 diabetes in 1994.

However, many doctors are aware of how effective this drug is in fighting insulin resistance, and therefore other conditions such as type 1 diabetes, prediabetes, and PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome). They are prescribing this drug “off-label” (not approved by the FDA) to people with the disease. ).

See below for more information. Metformin for prediabetes: advantages and disadvantages and Metformin for PCOS (benefits and side effects).

If you do not have type 2 diabetes and want to take metformin and receive insurance coverage, you may need to clear a health insurance hurdle. However, if your doctor has prescribed it to treat insulin resistance, there are good reasons to do so.

For more information about the use of metformin in type 1, see below. Metformin for type 1 diabetes: advantages and disadvantages.

Is the drug affordable to you?

Because Schroeder has Type 1 diabetes, not Type 2, the issue of cost compared to insurance coverage is paramount. Thankfully, metformin is affordable and available through insurance, she says.

“My insurance considers it a generic drug, so my copays are very high and affordable.”

Do you have any tips or advice for people looking to take metformin?

Schroeder truly believes in tailoring your diabetes management plan to your individual needs and health goals, and not letting anything stand in your way of achieving good health.

she says,

“I think it’s helpful to be familiar with the side effects before you start taking metformin, as some doctors tend to ignore them, but it’s also important to note that your body may need to adapt over time. Please keep this in mind. If not, consider other options with the guidance of your doctor.”

Metformin worked for her, and this effective and affordable drug may work for you, too, especially if you’re dealing with stubborn high blood sugar, A1c levels, or insulin resistance. yeah.

final thoughts

Metformin is a common prescription drug in the United States and is FDA-approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. However, this drug may be suitable for treating underlying insulin resistance in patients with all types of diabetes.

It is affordable, easily available, and highly effective in lowering blood sugar and A1c levels. When you first start taking the medication, you may experience side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, but these side effects will lessen over time.

If you don’t have type 2 diabetes, check to see if your insurance plan covers your medication. That said, since metformin is generic, it can prove to be relatively affordable, even if you have to pay in cash. (metformin oral tablet price [500 mg] The price for 30 days without insurance is about $11. )

If you want to know more about taking metformin, the drug’s pros and cons, and whether including metformin in your diabetes treatment plan is right for you, talk to your doctor.
See below for more information about this drug. Everything you need to know about metformin.

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