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Prescribed Metformin but wondering I can do this on diet alone

Discussion in 'Newly Diagnosed' started by Nicole T, Jul 19, 2020.

  1. Goonergal

    Goonergal Type 2 · Moderator
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    Really? I don’t find this to be true at all in the UK. I’ve yet to see bacon with added sugar here.
     
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  2. Alexandra100

    Alexandra100 Prefer not to say · Well-Known Member

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    You're right, there is more bacon prepared without sugar here in the UK than I had thought. However, here is Walls bacon: https://groceries.morrisons.com/products/wall-s-thick-cut-unsmoked-bacon-6-rashers-116147011
    Ingredients
    Pork (85%), Water, Salt, Dextrose, Glucose Syrup, Antioxidant (Sodium Ascorbate), Preservative (Sodium Nitrite, Sodium Nitrate), Flavour Enhancer (Glycine), Stabiliser (Sodium Diphosphate)
    Carb content 0.5g per rasher
    Waitrose Essential Unsmoked British bacon contains fewer nasties: INGREDIENTS: pork loin (88%), water, salt, preservatives (sodium nitrate, sodium nitrite), antioxidant (sodium ascorbate), but somehow comes out also at 0.5g carbs per rasher. Where do the carbs come from??? Pork loin contains none.
     
  3. OB87

    OB87 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi. Do you know how long it takes for metformin to have an effect? I noticed lower numbers within a few days but I had also changed my diet. Wondering whether it is just the metformin (1 tablet a day at the moment) or my dietary changes. Thanks
     
  4. DCUKMod

    DCUKMod I reversed my Type 2 · Master
    Staff Member Administrator

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    Like many thing, everyone's different. If you are just a few days into Metformin and changing your diet, I'm say it most likely to be your diet that's helping.

    Metformin just shaves a small margin off the A1c, so for those living with T2, and taking Metformin (or any other drugs for that matter), diet is really very important.
     
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  5. KK123

    KK123 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Definitely not rubbish, it's the same for me. If I eat a higher carb meal in the evening (with fat & protein in it as well such as a curry), taking the 'correct' amount of insulin, it is well within range after 2 hours, also within range after 5 or 6 hours, then up it goes (very gradually and only by 1 to 2 mmols, and in the morning I can guarantee it sits around 2 points higher for around 18 plus hours. I always start from a lowish level, say 4 to 5, but know that most of the next day it will hover around 6 to 7. x
     
  6. Hotpepper20000

    Hotpepper20000 · Well-Known Member

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    Yes some bacon as sugar in it. It is still less of a problem for me the any grain products.
    The bacon I eat on a regular basis At home as no sugar in it.
     
  7. Resurgam

    Resurgam Type 2 (in remission!) · Expert

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    I freeze packs of bacon so to defrost them I put it into water and heat it until it can be peeled apart. That removes a lot of salt and other soluble substances, the nitrates and nitrites, and any sugars after a few minutes in the warm water I sieve it out and fry it.
     
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  8. Nicole T

    Nicole T Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I initially decided to leave the Metformin and just change my diet. I only had my meter for 2 days prior to changing over, but I was immediately seeing wake-up fasting figures down into the 7's from the 9's. I was consistently staying below 10, when bread would take me as high as 12.5.

    I'm not expecting Metformin to have such a marked effect. But I want to get my average on Libre down to mid to high 5's, rather than the high 6's (sometimes low 7's) that it's currently trending at. No amount of dieting, or even cutting out alcohol, seems to be doing that for me. If I just stuck with the guideline of staying below 8.5, then I'm doing pretty well without any medication, but I suspect that's a recommendation that accepts gradual deterioration as part of the condition.

    Totally unrelated: I buy bacon, open the packets, put a double layer of cling film between each rasher, and then freeze. You can peel the rashers off frozen, and because the meat is so thin, cook them without thawing them first. I tried it with a single layer, first time round, but they didn't separate very easily.
     
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  9. Alexandra100

    Alexandra100 Prefer not to say · Well-Known Member

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    Do you know for sure this removes the nitrates and nitrites?
     
  10. Resurgam

    Resurgam Type 2 (in remission!) · Expert

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    I know that they are soluble, therefore the warm water will dissolve them - I can't say that they will be entirely removed from the bacon, but they will be significantly reduced as they are very soluble in warm water, as soluble as sugar for instance.
     
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  11. Nicole T

    Nicole T Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Ever wish you'd minded your own business?

    Digging through some of my mum's old stuff, and I found a point where she must have been regularly testing and recording her figures. 2014, which would have made her 74 at the time. Her figures are better than mine, quite often getting sub 5's, which I haven't seen in a while. Still, she was on so many pills that she rattled.

    I'm day 2 on 500mg metformin with breakfast. I know it should be too early to tell, less than 36 hours in, but I can already see a significant change in my Libre charts that I don't think is coincidence. Maybe the next few days will confirm.

    My overall levels don't seem to be changing yet. Still averaging around 7 over a given 24 hour period, which seems to be typical. (This is Libre that's fairly consistently overreading +1 mmol/L, so that would more realistically be a 6.) A brief dip below 6 at 9pm last night, but other than that, I've been 6 to 8.5 the whole time (probably 5 to 7.5 in reality.) What is interesting is that the peaks seem to have reduced massively. I expected a decent spike from the 20g of carbs I had for lunch, but got nothing at all. What used to look like a seismograph in the middle of a severe earthquake now looks far more like a very lazy person's signature.

    So maybe even a low dose of metformin can smooth things out for me. I really don't want to go up to the full dose, but if a smaller one can help me along, I might be reasonably happy with that.
     
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  12. ianf0ster

    ianf0ster Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Although we regularly see warnings about the dangers of nitrates and nitrites in processed meat, I have never seen any warnings about it in vegetables - Celery for example, which I believe some bacon producers use in order to avoid having to list nitrates and nitrites.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. Alexandra100

    Alexandra100 Prefer not to say · Well-Known Member

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    In any case, best to increase your Metformin dose very slowly to avoid the digestive upsets so many get with it. Personally I am very glad to take the maximum dose. (As well as eating VLC.) Did you know that female diabetics already taking Metformin who became seriously ill with with Covid19 have a 21-24% better chance of surviving?
    https://www.diabetes.co.uk/news/202...le-death-rates-among-those-with-covid-19.html
     
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  14. Resurgam

    Resurgam Type 2 (in remission!) · Expert

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    My thoughts on the chemical additions to bacon are simply that they were not there to start with, so removing them is no bad thing. Soluble compounds are usually dealt with easily enough - at lest by adults with fully functioning filtration systems in place, but why chance it when a swift dunk in warm water is likely to remove much of the problem?
     
  15. Nicole T

    Nicole T Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Back after a bit of a break, after trying out 500mg/day metformin for a week. On a good day, it's knocking 0.5 mmol/L of my Libre average, and on a not so good day, that's more like 0.2. In a Tesco 'every little helps' way, that's all good. Ultimately, it's not worth the risks and side effects I'm already getting from it, including one that's been instrumental in me not knowing whether I'm still in a relationship right now.

    My figures are acceptable to the diabetes nurse without metformin, admittedly from a perspective that accepts this as a degenerative condition. I was projecting a pre-diabetic or maybe even non-diabetic HbA1c without any medication whatsoever. I felt metformin was worth a try to see if it could significantly reduce my averages while having acceptable side effects. What I've ended up with is minimal change and unacceptable side effects.

    It seems the (undocumented in the patient literature) feature of metformin in lowering testosterone (I'm a non-op trans woman for those who haven't figured it out or read my profile, so we're talking male biology) is, for me, the robbing of Peter necessary to pay Paul for what's probably a marginal chance of keeping the sensation in my feet for a few years longer. It's not worth it, especially when it has my girlfriend walking out of the door because, while I tell her she still excites me, my body keeps saying the opposite.

    I need to change my sig again, I suppose.
     
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    #215 Nicole T, Nov 9, 2020 at 12:16 PM
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2020
  16. Alexandra100

    Alexandra100 Prefer not to say · Well-Known Member

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    Can you quote any sources for this idea, or have you deduced it from your personal experience? It is usually said that metformin takes at least a week for any bg lowering effects, and months for the full benefit. Of course, the dreaded upset stomach side effects kick in much earlier! I found this article helpful:
    https://diatribe.org/everything-you-always-wanted-know-about-metformin-were-afraid-ask
    One advantage of metformin, it is out of patent, so no-one stands to make much money from prescribing it. On the contrary, big pharma is constantly promoting other, more recently invented drugs that have nothing like the track record of metformin (around since the 20s) and cost vastly more.
     
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  17. Nicole T

    Nicole T Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    A quick Google reveals several articles mentioning a link between metformin use and reduction in testosterone levels. They perhaps trace back to the same study. I haven't investigated in detail.

    It could be coincidence or an indirect consequence, but something has changed significantly for me in the last 7 days. Apart from feeling rough on Thursday, and still a bit under the weather Friday, I can't think of anything else that could be responsible apart from the metformin. I think the next sensible step is to come off the medication and see if things improve.
     
  18. mymuk

    mymuk Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Although it could also be argued that things might settle after a few weeks?

    But then I seem to have no negative reactions to Metformin (and have just got HbA1c to 38 via diet) so, as everyone says, we're all different. Which is often infuriating. I hope whichever way you go you continue to see improvements.
     
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  19. Nicole T

    Nicole T Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    The side effects might settle. Some might be unrelated. I'm in a bad place, emotionally, right now, and looking for stuff to blame, and perhaps metformin is an easy target. It definitely gave me the runs, massacred my appetite and left an unpleasant taste in my mouth. Only the first of those three things seemed to clear up after the first week. Add in the paranoia of what can go wrong when mixed with alcohol (I don't drink ridiculously most of the time, but like a good blow-out every now and again) and I don't think it's worth it for the 0.2 to 0.5 mmol/L reduction it's given me after a week. Perhaps that gets even better over time, but various Googlings suggest that it's 48 hours before anything happens, and about 7 days before the bulk of the effect is seen.

    I'm averaging 6.9 mmol/L according to Libre, which is probably more like 6 by blood. That puts my HbA1c in the range of 35 to 42 without metformin. Do I really need it?
     
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  20. Antje77

    Antje77 LADA · Moderator
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    No way for me to know if it's the metformin or not, but have a big fat hug from me!
     
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