Adopting a Healthy Lifestyle for Diabetics: Taking Your Prescribed Medication


Diabetes changes over time. Sometimes changing your lifestyle is not enough to keep your blood glucose levels in the target range. In this case, your doctor may also add medication to your treatment.

Antihyperglycemic medications

There are several classes of medication for diabetes, each one acting in a different way. Some drugs stimulate the release of insulin, while others make insulin more effective.

Some drugs may cause hypoglycemia. Check if this is the case for the drugs you are taking. If you experience episodes of hypoglycemia, treat them as described in this post, and have your medication adjusted if necessary.

It’s completely normal that your medication will need some adjusting at different times in your life.


Insulin is used when other medications are not effectively managing your blood glucose. Some people start on insulin at the onset of diabetes. Every person is different and so is the treatment they require.

Training by a qualified healthcare professional is required to learn how to properly use a syringe, insulin pen, or any other injection device and to adjust the doses.


Non-prescription drugs and natural products

Some non-prescription drugs or natural health products can affect your blood glucose levels of have adverse reactions with your medications.

Read the label to see if the products that you plan to take have any contraindications that concern you (diabetes or high blood pressure, for example).

Before trying a new product, speak to your pharmacist or doctor first. If you decide to use them, check your blood glucose levels more often so you can monitor their effects.

A few tips
If you have to take medication, make sure you respect the prescribed dosage and follow all recommendations made by the professionals treating you. If you have questions, feel free to ask. And if you’re worried or experiencing side effects, talk about it.

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