AskNadia: Going to Stop Taking My Insulin

I have type 2 diabetes and am overweight. I want to get off my insulin and have decided to fast to lose weight and stop taking my insulin. I bought a cleanse and diet package. I don’t want to go to my Doctor because I am scared he will talk me out of it.


Dear Suzanna,

Congratulations on setting a new health goals. People living with type 2 diabetes can go off all medications with the right diet and exercise program.  We just featured a man who lost 200 pounds and went off all of his insulin and metformin. What motivated him? His mother’s passing from diabetes complications.

50 to 80 Percent of Patients Do Not take Their Medication

It is estimated that 50% of people who have prescription do not take their medication. In some instances, like hypertension, the percentage of people who have decided not to take their medication, can be as high as 80%. Research data shows that there is a relationship between the quality of your life and marinating a regime that will give you the best outcomes.

Why do we have such a large population that have unilaterally decided to go off their prescriptions?

Sometimes the physician writes a prescription without consulting the patient. This opens up a host of problems from which range from, the timing of the medication, possibly the side affects, medical literacy; understanding the importance of taking the medication, cost to accessibility.

I would highly recommend working with a healthcare professional before starting your fast and throwing away your insulin. You made no mention of any other medication.  However, if you are on  hypertension medication, you could be risking a disability and possibly death.

Your story is common among type 2’s. Diabetes is a degenerative disease. You had pre-diabetes long before you were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Allow a similar process to take place when eliminating insulin and possibly other medications from your self-management.

This Is Why I Think You Need to Work with A Healthcare Professional

I had a very close friend who I called my Aunt my whole life because she was at my birth. She and I share the same birth day and so did our first born sons.  The last time I saw her, she attended my mother’s memorial at my house. As on one the guests at my home, I noticed she was sitting by herself not feeling well. I asked her to test her blood sugar and she was surprised to see it was 600. She had insulin on hand and took 12 units. One hour after she took her injection, she tested again and her blood sugar was still 600. She took anther 12 units waited and an hour.  I had urged her to go to the hospital. She refused. Then I made her promise she would call her physician first thing in the morning. She nodded.

Five months later, my best friend called me crying on the phone at 2 am in the morning. Her mother, the women I called my aunt had passed away in her sleep.I showed up to help my friend dress her mother in her favorite clothes for the undertaker.

Later that day, I walked into my aunt’s kitchen and saw that she had purchased a fasting diet program for quick weight loss. Her daughter told me that she stopped taking her insulin because she was frustrated with her diabetes and once for all was going to lose weight and get off of her insulin.

The moral of the story is my aunt like you wanted to get off her insulin.

She unfortunately took matters in her own hands and her loved ones, including me,  feel a tremendous loss knowing that the outcome could have been different. Read the article about the man that lost 200 pounds. He wanted what you wanted and did it with the care of his health care professional. Lucky for his family, he thrives and will be there for his daughter as she grows up.

Good luck with getting off insulin. I hope you include a healthcare professional team with your new goal.




Medication Adherence:WHO Cares?

Type 2 Diabetes: 200-pound Loss Helps Phillip Get Off of Insulin and Metformin


Nadia’s feedback on your question is in no way intended to initiate or replace your healthcare professional’s therapy or advice. Please check in with your medical team to discuss your diabetes management concerns.

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About Nadia:

Nadia is a diabetes advocate that was not only born into a family with diabetes but also married into one. She was propelled at a young age into “caretaker mode,” and with her knowledge of the scarcity of resources, support, and understanding for people with diabetes, co-founded Diabetes Interview, now Diabetes Health magazine.

Nadia has received 14 nominations for her work as a diabetes advocate.
 She has been featured on ABC, NBC, CBS, and other major cable networks. Her publications, medical supply business, and website have been cited, recognized and published in the San Francisco Chronicle, The Wall Street Journal, Ann Landers advice column, former Chrysler chairman Lee Iacocca, Entrepreneur magazine, Houston News,, Brand Week, Drug Topics, and many other media outlets.


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