How much insulin do you take a day?

Hi Joe,

Thank you for the heads up. You are correct, clearly I’m a newbie. I’ve never connected with the diabetic community so I’m hoping to make some online friends and share the diabetic walk of life with them. I’m also hoping to learn about insulin pumps and how people feel about them. I’ll have to search for those conversations.

Thank you for your warm welcome. Wishing you a great A1c and perfect health! :blush:


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Consistently average 42 total units daily.

Hi Henry,

I’ve been a 25u daily or less my entire life with Humalog and a long acting (recently Triseba). Now that I’m using Humalog only with an Omnipod dash pump, I find I need more insulin. 1u of Humalog via disposable needle used to treat 100mg/dL. With my pump, 1u only treats an average of 35-50mg/dL.

This is frustrating also because I’m still getting high blood sugars. I woke up this morning with a blood sugar of 300. When I woke up at 3AM it was 135 flatline (I use a Dexcom 6). After taking 2.5u via pump, an hour and a half later my blood sugar is 306 and I have a burger and coffee I’m afraid to eat. I took another 3u of insulin, but I’m still scared that maybe my pump site is ineffective? Or maybe I’m just becoming insulin resistant? I don’t know what to think or what to make of it and it really upsets me becuase I am desperately trying to have perfect blood sugar levels to prevent all of the long term complications. I work in dialysis and know that is not a future I want.

Anyway- wishing you the greatest health and A1c’s! :blush:

Hi Aimee @apowers, reading what you just wrote, I’d see you as “normal” for a person living with diabetes for a couple of years. I’ve been using insulin ti live since the 1950’s, and my daily NED for injected/infused insulin has ranged from 16/upd to about 120/upd - yeah, quite a range, but that is what my ever-changing body has needed. I am not a medical professional, so what I suggest you try is based solely from my living experience.

In this, I will assume that the Insulin:Carbohydrate Ratios that you entered into your OmniPod have been working well for you in the recent weeks before changeover, and that you were not overdosing Triseba - that is, you could safely skip a meal and your BG wouldn’t drop. This would leave two factors that deserve careful observation:

  • Basal Insulin Flow Rates - for different time periods during the day. In theory, if basal rates are correct, a person could readily go for extended periods of time without eating, and not need to take correction insulin or grab a “carb fix”. A suimple way to validate basal rates is to eat a normal supper on a usual day and take your customary amount of insulin. Check, and write down, your BGL every two hours; do not eat again until the following day, after noon. Of course, eat if your BGL drops dangerously, and give correction rapid-acting for excessively high BGL. If you need to eat, or take correction insulin, use this data to adjust your basal rate[s] for the appropriate time period. After adjustments, wait a couple of days and retry the validation. My biased opinion, in insulin pump use, basal rates are the most important user-input.
  • Insulin Sensitivity Factor [ISF]: or sometimes called correction rate. This is the sometimes overlooked bit that comes into calculating a meal-time bolus - decades ago it was in my arithmetic calculations, and it is part of every electronic dose-helper that I’ve tried. Insulin correction factor is the amount you would subtract from your calculated carb:insulin dose if your BGL is below your wanted target; or added if your BGL is higher than target. To calculate your ISF, at a time you are at a “safe point” [say 150 mg/dl] insulin has not been injected/infused for 4 hours, take 1 Unit of your rapid-acting insulin, and record your BGL at 30 minute intervals during the next few hours. The difference between that 150 and your BLG reading after 4 hours, is for most people their ISF for that time of day - ISF can vary during the day.

Not easy stuff, but once you get things running well, it becomes easier. I’ve hear excellent reports for the OmniPod Dash, and the soon to be released Horizon; I wish you success.

In type 1 diabetes, 0.5 to 0.8 quantity of insulin per Kg of body weight each day. Half one id for food and half one is for basal rate. DAFNE is taken as long acting and it is further divided into two injections of detemir.

hi @darrenjimmy, welcome to TypeOneNation - you should probably list your references here - I am not sure if you are using data from Pakistan or from other sources? We, as a non-professional self help group, do not specify treatments here we generally leave that up to individuals in the medical profession. FYI, National Library of Medicine (NLM) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).does not agree with your numbers, so for our participants here, please get advice from your endocrinologist.

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Hey, funny this popped up on my message board because I’m thinking of switching my son to 1 insulin unit for every three carbs for his breakfast dose because we just can’t seem to bring his breakfast numbers down. That seems like SO MUCH insulin though and it makes me worried that he is going to go low. Also, it means we have to be carb counting jedis!!! Does anyone have a ratio this low???

Hi @lucyinthesky827 my morning basal rate is high and so I don’t have to make it up in carb ratio- that being said my morning ratio is lowest of the day. If you son is on a pump it’s a good idea to re test basal rates once in a while. Insulin needs are insulin needs there is no right or wrong here. The best is if you can control while not going too low. Cheers and good luck :four_leaf_clover:

Hi Lucy @lucyinthesky827, an insulin-to-carb ratio of 1:3 does sound like a high ratio, but if this is what your son needs, then it is “right”. As @Joe says so often, in a few different ways, the correct amount of insulin to inject/infuse is what our body needs at that time, and under those circumstances. [This “Joe Wisdom” has helped me to refine, and improve, my diabetes management.]

What you don’t say her Lucy, is the level of your son’s glucose before eating, and what his glucose level is a couple of hours after eating. In addition to meal-time insulin bolus dosing based on carbohydrates consumed, what other insulin does your son use - background basal insulin by injection, or background basal infused by a pump?

There are two similar causes for us needing ‘more’ insulin in the morning, “Dawn Phenomenon” and “Somogyi Effect” - the dawn phenomenon occurs naturally in every one with autoimmune diabetes [TypeOne] because our bodies do not make the additional insulin needed by everyone [with or without diabetes] to counteract the adrenalin release need to awaken naturally. For this, I use a couple of timed insulin-pump basal rate increases beginning a few hours before I usually awaken.

The “Somogyi Effect” is a similar rise in glucose levels in the morning, but it is not natural - it is caused by ineffective insulin management - usually the day/evening before. The Somogyi, caused by diabetes management decisions, is what often-times causes the hypoglycemic event in the early [3 AM] morning hours. I learned the hard way that the improper timing of my evening background-insulin doses and skipping evening snacks was the cause of my night-time severe lows and needing so much insulin for breakfast.

Insulin dosing is a 24 hour task.

Hi Melinda,
Your daily dosage is about like mine. I weigh 130 lbs. When I was first diagnosed I was taking about 32 units a day, but after I gained back lost weight, I weighed about 145 lbs and continued taking about 30-34 units. I’m using the Tandem Control IQ with the Dexcom G6. BTW, a G7 is planned by 2022.

30 units Humalog during the day
20 Optisulin in the morning
I’m off all insulin at night thank to intermittent fasting. The skipping supper leads to lows some nights though

Hi @F_Ltb welcome to TypeOneNation. That optisulin you take (generic glargine) is active for almost 24 hours so it could cover you all night for background requirements. Cheers!