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November 29, 2002

Daily Care

Question from Australia:

My specialist advised that I should always give myself the minimum dose (currently 6 units) of Humalog per meal, but when I told him I become seriously hypo about an hour after I choose to eat very light meals such as salads he just said to "eat more food". Why should I "eat more food" than everybody else? I adjust my insulin up if a meal requires it, why not down? Also, since developing type 1 diabetes, for the first time in my life I have to watch my weight.

Answer:

Your question reminds me that you would benefit from learning how to carbohydrate counting. We have our patients take their rapid-acting insulin based on counting the servings of carbohydrates and using a ratio of units per carb serving. For instance, if you were taking 2 units per carb serving, you would take 8 units for four carb servings. This gives you the opportunity to adjust at any meal, in either direction. I would have you check with your local diabetes care team, dietitian, or physician regarding this type of system.

JTL