Need better control of your blood sugar? Adding Humalog to your basal insulin can help.
You may have been taking a long-acting insulin for a while now. So why did your doctor prescribe another insulin? Well, it's to help control the blood sugar "spikes" that happen naturally when you eat. Everyone gets them, but when you have diabetes you may need extra help controlling them. That's where Humalog comes in.
- Humalog mealtime insulins are used to treat people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes for the control of high blood sugar.
- Humalog is a fast-acting insulin that starts working faster and works for a shorter period of time than regular human insulin.
- Humalog is taken within 15 minutes before eating or right after eating a meal.
Select Safety Information
Do not take Humalog, Insulin Lispro Injection, Humalog Mix50/50, Humalog Mix75/25, or Insulin Lispro Protamine and Insulin Lispro Injectable Suspension Mix75/25 if you have:
- symptoms of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)
- an allergy to insulin lispro products or any of their ingredients.
Types of Insulin
Your longer-acting insulin will still manage your blood sugar levels at night and between meals. Taking mealtime insulin in addition to longer-acting insulin may help to control your blood sugar throughout the day.
It's important to talk to your healthcare provider about when and how often you should check your blood sugar.
Comparing types of insulin
Take a look at our overview below to find out about the different types of insulin. You’ll notice that there are differences in when the types of insulin reach your bloodstream, when they “peak” in your body, and how long they can last (length of time the insulin keeps lowering your blood sugar).
- Fast-acting insulin (also called rapid-acting), is absorbed quickly and starts working in about 15 minutes after injection to lower blood sugar after meals. Humalog is fast-acting insulin. In people with type 1 diabetes, Humalog is generally used with a longer-acting insulin (except when using an external insulin pump).
- Short-acting insulin can cover insulin needs for meals eaten within 30 minutes after injection. Short-acting insulin is also considered a mealtime insulin.
- Intermediate-acting insulin can cover your insulin needs between meals and during the night. It generally takes about 2-4 hours for this insulin to start working after injection.
- Longer-acting or basal insulin manages blood sugar levels at night and between meals. Humalog works together with longer-acting insulin to help balance out your blood sugar throughout the day.
The times shown in our table and graph are estimates. Always work with your healthcare provider to see when and how often you should check your blood sugar levels.
|Fast-acting||Starts: 5-15 min||Peaks: 1-3 hr||Lasts: 4-6 hr|
|Short-acting||Starts: 30-60 min||Peaks: 2-3 hr||Lasts: 6-10 hr|
|Intermediate-acting||Starts: 2-4 hr||Peaks: 4-10 hr||Lasts: 14-18 hr|
|Longer-acting basal||Starts: 1 hr approx.||Peaks: Peakless||Lasts 24 hr|
Select Safety Information
Do not change the type of insulin you take or your dose, unless your doctor tells you to. This could cause low or high blood sugar, which could be serious. Do not inject your insulin into the exact same spot or where the skin has pit or lumps. Avoid injecting into thickened, tender, bruised, scaly, hard, scarred, or damaged skin.
About Mealtime Insulin
Mealtime insulins are fast-acting insulins that are taken right before or after meals.
Type 2 diabetes may progress over time. This does not mean that you failed. All your hard work still counts, but it means sometimes you have to change how you care for it. That's why your healthcare provider has prescribed Humalog to help lower your blood sugar.
You've just taken an important step in learning to manage your diabetes. There will be ups and downs as you learn to fit Humalog into your life, but by taking it in small steps, you can find your rhythm for living with mealtime insulin.
Managing Blood Sugar
When using mealtime insulin like Humalog, you must test your blood sugar (glucose). For example, you may need to test before and after meals and at bedtime. Your doctor will tell you when and how often you should test.
Select Safety Information
Humalog, Insulin Lispro Injection, Humalog Mix50/50, Humalog Mix75/25, and Insulin Lispro Protamine and Insulin Lispro Injectable Suspension Mix75/25 may cause serious side effects. Some of these can lead to death. The possible serious side effects are:
- Low blood sugar. This can cause:
- dizziness or light-headedness
- blurred vision
- fast heartbeat
- mood change
- slurred speech
If you are at risk of having severely low blood sugar, your doctor may prescribe a glucagon emergency kit. These are used when your blood sugar becomes too low and you are unable to take sugar by mouth. Glucagon helps your body release sugar into your bloodstream.
Your blood sugar goals
The American Diabetes Association recommends blood sugar goals for people with diabetes. These don’t apply to everyone, however, so work with your doctor to set the right goals for you.
|Blood sugar check||Goal|
|Before meals |
(Blood sugar self-check)
|Goal: 80-130 mg/dL|
|1-2 hours after starting your meal |
(Blood sugar self-check)
|Goal: Less than 180 mg/dL|
(Tested by your doctor)
|Goal: Less than 7%|
These goals are not applicable to pregnant women or children. These goals should be individualized.
These guidelines don't apply to everyone, so work with your doctor to set the right goals for you.
About low blood sugar
Low blood sugar is the most common side effect of Humalog. Low blood sugar (glucose) happens when a person's blood sugar falls below 70mg/dL. It can be caused by:
- Being more physically active than usual
- Taking too much diabetes medication
- Eating at the wrong time for the medication taken
- Other medications taken in addition to Humalog
- Not finishing meals or snacks
Low blood sugar can also be caused by a combination of these or other factors.
What does it feel like to have low blood sugar?
Low blood sugar can include any combination of these symptoms and/or others not listed. And they might not be the same every time. You might feel differently depending on how low your blood sugar gets or on other factors, like what caused your blood sugar to go low. Some people may have no symptoms, so it is important to check your blood sugar regularly as your doctor instructs.
Managing Low Blood Sugar
Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) can be serious. The American Diabetes Association recommends you do the following immediately:
- Check your blood sugar (glucose). Remember: if it's below 70mg/dL, your blood sugar is too low.
- If your blood sugar is too low, eat something with sugar right away (see below).
- After 15 minutes, check your blood sugar level again.
- Repeat treatment if necessary. If your blood sugar is still low after another 15 minutes, call your emergency service (911) or your doctor.
After you have treated your low blood sugar, be sure to eat regular meals and snacks.
These are guidelines only. Please discuss recommendations specific to the person's low blood sugar with a healthcare team.
How to quickly raise your blood sugar
Three good options for quickly raising low blood sugar levels include:
These are examples of items that contain approximately 15-20 grams of carbohydrates. Check food product labels to ensure that you are getting the right amount of carbohydrates.
If you are unable to eat or drink, consider using a treatment for severe low blood sugar.