Insulin Resistance

I have been diagnosed with this about 3 years ago and because of it I have to keep changing insulin and doses! I hate this and was wondering if there was a way to prevent being resistant! I didn't think I was insulin resistant until I read the sympthoms and I have everyone! Let me know if you have this or think you might and if you have any ideas on how to prevent it!


Here are the sypthoms:

Here are the possible symptoms of insulin resistance:

abdominal bloating
addictions, alcohol abuse or craving
anger, mood swings, irrational behaviour, aggression
anxiety, agitation, nervousness, constant worry, tension, panic attacks, panicky
caffeine needed to get going in the morning
constant hunger, appetite high, inability to tolerate long intervals without food
cramping in legs
cravings/binges for sweet things; sugar, breads, cakes etc
dry and itching skin
easily upset, quick to cry
excessive facial and body hair on women
excessive yawning
exhaustion, chronic fatigue, tired all the time, stamina decreased
frequent infections, poor skin healing
fuzzy brain, mental confusion, inability to concentrate
high blood pressure
high cholesterol, non-alcoholic fatty liver
hot flushes, night sweats
hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar)
inability to eat breakfast
increased abdominal fat
infertility, difficulty in falling pregnant
irritable, jittery, weak, tired or depressed if meals are skipped
nausea, particularly in the morning
palpitations, shaking, trembling
PCO (poly cystic ovarian disease)
swollen feet and/or ankles
tendency to feel cold
tight chest
water retention
weight gain, inability to loose weight

and muscle weakness

This is crazy but I think I have all of these!

Type 2 is characterized by insulin resistance (although it's also possible in T1), so are you sure that's not a list of symptoms of undiagosed or uncontrolled T2, i.e., of high a1c?? Right before my menstrual cycle, I have some resistance each month, but my only symptom is high BG's/needing more insulin because my a1c's are otherwise okay. It seems to me that getting your a1c under better control would help prevent a lot of those, and that they aren't necessary to have, even with insulin resistance.

Exercising really helps me lower the amount of insulin I need, including my basals. Also, has your endo done a full work-up for other hormonal issues (thyroid, etc)? Some T1's are also on symlin or on metforim (sp?) to help with these issues. I'm not sure why the endo diagnosed you with this problem without trying to look for solutions. ): Hopefully you can get some better answers from him/her soon.


I wish this was true!!! I have been worked up for everything in the book, levels adjusted, exercising, eating better and different, my a1c is up and down as well... but my dr deff did a full investigation! I need to change my insulin every 6 months to a year! And it's so annoying! Im not a perfect diabetic but I know what Im doing wouldn't make me how I am! Im off the wall with emotions and eating constantly (always healthy snack, celery, pickles, carrots, and an occasional naughty one... cheese, chips, and beef jerky :)...) but nothing seems to work! Ive been googling my butt off and it seems I do have IR but I just cant find ways to prevent it!

So many of the symptoms you have are also symptoms of high and low blood sugar.  The real definition of insulin resistance is if you're taking more than average for your weight.  There are charts of insulin levels in John Walsh's book "Using Insulin" and you can also probably find a chart online that will show if you're insulin resistant or not. 

Changing your insulin dose every 6-12 months isn't unusual.  I've been diabetic 33 years and change my dose often.  Sometimes it stress level, or I gain or lose 5 pounds, or am eating differently, or seasons change or whatever. 

Something you may want to be tested for is sleep apnea.  If you're overweight it makes it more difficult to breathe when you fall asleep and you become oxygen deprived.  Causes high cortisol levels (which causes belly fat) and because you're tired you may seek out high fat and calorie food for energy. 

You may also try logging the food you're eating.  Most of us eat way more calories and carbs than we think, which can make adjusting insulin difficult. 

Hope this helps.



[quote user="Vanessa Gonzalez (King)"] Ive been googling my butt off [/quote]

Stop googling!   :)

That list of symptoms you provided is not from any medical website I can find (except one promoting progesterone therapy?) - but I do find it mentioned several times in other forums.  Insulin resistance is not diagnosed based on symptoms - there are tests for it.  Continue to work with your doctor and take care of yourself - I hope you find some answers.


Type 1 diabetics are being diagnosed with insulin resistance (IR) more and more often. After being type 1 for 53 years, I was diagnosed with IR in 1998. I have been taking a type 2 med along with my insulin ever since. My diabetes control is not really more complicated than before, it is just one more medication added to my list. I now use a 1:7 insulin:carb ratio and my TDD (total daily dosage) is 34 units. If I did not have IR I would be using less insulin. I have 18 of the characteristics in your list, but I am betting that there are many people who have 18 or more, and do not have IR. The amount of insulin used is a much better indicator of IR.

I understand where everyone is coming from and I love the input. Im working with my dr's to overcome this or at least figure out what is going on! I was tested for sleep apnea and it was negative! :) Plus I sleep like a baby :) Anywho I just had to switch insulins AGAIN! Not doeses but the whole brand and type! I was taking Lantus and Humalog and now Im on 70/30 and Humalog...... O I just want my pump back!!! Praying when I see my endo on the 29th she will put me back on the pump! (Had it when I was prego and loved it! But couldn't afford it without insurance!)

Have to agree with others that I really wonder about "insulin resistance". Is the body really RESISTING insulin working or is just needing MORE insulin at those times to do the jobs it needs to do. Some might find it is a silly question to ask, since the main result is higher BG (and then subsequent effects). 

It would seem that the pump might be an easier way to go for you since then you can better match basal insulin demands to the different times of day, helping you achieve more even or in range BGs. But I get the cost problems.

I also believe it is pretty common to make insulin adjustments. I have an adult T1 friend who says her endo makes slight tweaks to her pump settings at almost every visit (3 mos). I make adjustments to my 5 yr olds insulin doses about 1x a month if not more. I think it is great that you endo is working to find a solution that will work well for you even if it means pretty big changes in insulin type, etc. regularly. Diabetes is a frustrating disease. It is great that you are working on it!

Well one of the confusing things for me was that my bg's where not elavated and when they did it was only 210 to 290... but rarely did this happen. Most of the time I was low between 30 and 70. I ask my dr why if my body is resisting the insulin are my sugars low? Still havnt gotten an answer that I understand. A syptom of IR is hypoglycemia. I dont understand it at all! He told me however that the IR is what's making my body feel like crap all of the symptoms above.... suck! But yet my bg's are not high! They are low, so why adjust my sugars? IDK it's all so confusing to me! The thing I absolutly HATE is when my sugars are 120 and my attitude and emotions feel like Im 600! I mean, sad, and cuss alot of people out! :( But my sugars are normal! Idk Im so confused!!!

Vanessa, when IR is present, it becomes necessary to increase insulin dosages to compensate for higher than usual BG. If you increase your bolus and basal insulins to compensate, then you may overcompensate and start running low much of the time. It is important to know your ISF (insulin sensitivity factor). My ISF is 15 most of the day. That means that one unit of fast acting insulin will lower my BG a5 points. If I want to lower my BG 30 points, I need 2 units of bolus insulin. If my ISF is set too low, I will have low BG due to too much insulin. I have found that my ISF varies a lot. While sleeping, my ISF is 30, which means that one unit of bolus insulin will lower my BG 30 points. Until I discovered this, I was giving myself too much insulin for high BG's in the late evening, or during the night, and I had hypos while sleeping. that never happens now that I am using the correct ISF. I am using Metformin to help my IR, and everything is going well.

Are you on a pump Richard?

Yes, I have used my Minimed pump almost 4 years. The warranty runs out in June, and I want to use the newer Minimed model then, the Revel, but without the CGM.

Yeah when I was on the pump I was in complete control of my T1D buuuut because I was pregnant and not working due to the risks I was eligable for medicaide. Now Im not and I just started recieving benifits from work so with fingers crossed I will be getting back on a pump! Then I don't think I will have to worry about IR or all this confusion!