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Overview Overview How do I get off Metformin?

How do I get off Metformin?

Medications Diabetes
9/17/2021    |    0 min read

It is possible, but it takes work. 

Metformin, the most common medication used for treating diabetes, is a drug prescribed to help manage blood glucose levels.

Metformin helps lower your blood sugar by decreasing the amount of glucose you make and absorb.  It's an effective and safe medication for treating diabetes.

Some people need to take Metformin long-term to manage their blood glucose levels. Others may decide they don't want to take it any longer. While it's possible to stop taking Metformin, there are essential things to keep in mind before making any changes.

If you want to learn how to get off Metformin (or any medications), the very first step is to have a conversation with your doctor or healthcare provider before stopping. Your doctor will be able to help you understand the risks and benefits for you.

Getting off Metformin will require making sure your blood sugar is in range even without the medication. Luckily, many lifestyle habits make a big difference in helping you lower your blood sugar.

How to manage diabetes without medication

Here are eight things you can work on starting today:

1. Move your body

Regular exercise helps lower blood sugar, enhances insulin sensitivity, and can help you lose weight. Whether walking, dancing, or swimming, find something you enjoy because you'll be more likely to stick with it.

2. Stop smoking

Smoking makes diabetes harder to manage and can lead to problems with medication dosage. It also increases your risk for other health conditions like heart disease and stroke (and people with diabetes are already at higher risk for these conditions). It's not always easy to stop, but there are resources to make it easier (and your 9amHealth Care Team can help too).

3. Reduce your alcohol intake

Not only can alcohol impact your blood sugar, but it can also interfere with how well your medications work. Certain alcoholic beverages like mixed drinks or beer can also be high in sugar. If you are used to drinking daily, start by cutting back to a few times a week or adjust the types of drinks you choose.

4. Manage your stress

Stress is such a big part of life, but unfortunately, it's not great for our bodies. It can increase your blood pressure and heart rate and make it harder to meet blood glucose targets. While you can't always avoid the stress in your life, you can work on techniques like deep breathing to reduce the impact on your health.

5. Get a good night's sleep

Your body works to keep your blood sugar levels within a healthy range when you sleep. Lack of sleep has been linked to a higher risk for type 2 diabetes.  Aim for seven to nine hours of sleep each night.

6. Don't skip meals 

Skipping meals may seem like a good idea to cut calories, but you are much more likely to overeat if you wait too long to eat. It can also lead to big blood sugar spikes or significant lows.  Most people benefit from eating every three to four hours.

7. Eat balanced meals and snacks

Make sure to include carbohydrates, protein, and fats at each meal and snack. Protein and fat help keep your blood sugar more stable and keep you satisfied between meals. Adding in healthy, high fiber carbs like whole grains, fruits, and veggies is also important for overall health.

8. Talk to your Care Team at 9amHealth

Your Care Team is there just for you and your needs. They can help you navigate the changes you are thinking about making. They can also answer any questions that might come up. 

The care your need to feel care-free

9amHealth gives you the tools you need to manage your prediabetes and type 2 diabetes with ease.

About the author

Caitlin Beale is a registered dietitian nutritionist and freelance health writer based out of Northern California. She’s worked for over ten years as a dietitian in acute care, private practice, education, and community nutrition. Caitlin loves translating complicated science-based information into fun-to-read content that is accessible to anyone.

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