If you are someone with diabetes, chances are you are taking some sort of medication, but did you know that about half of those who have diabetes admit to not taking their medications?
According to the CDC, about 50% of the time, medication is not taken as directed. Possible reasons reported why they don’t take their medications as directed are because the instructions were never provided, forgetfulness, possible side effects and the perception that the medication doesn’t seem to be working.
It’s dangerous to not take your medicines as directed because it can lead to serious health problems including hospitalization, hypoglycemia and even hyperglycemia. If you are unsure about what side effects may come when taking medicine, or if you have questions about when to take them, please consult your doctor right away.
A lot of medicines simply say “take with food” or “take on an empty stomach.” Certain medications can be affected by when you eat, so how do you know when the best time to take your medicine is? Diabetes Self Management provides a little bit of guidance to help figure it out:
- Take on an empty stomach: They advise to take your medicine 2 hours before or after you eat something
- Take before a meal: Take medicine at least 1 hour before eating.
- Take with food: DO NOT take your food on an empty stomach. The best thing to do is to take the medicine right when you start eating or during it.
If you are someone who is prescribed more than one diabetic medicine, sometimes you may think it’s convenient to take your medicines all at once, right? Truth is, medicine relies on when you take it, so taking them all at once may not be the best option. Below is a guide of the best times to take any of the following diabetic medicines:
- Metformin: Take with food. Take Metformin right when you start to eat a meal to lower your chance of having an upset stomach.
- Glipizide: Take about 30 minutes before a meal.
- DPP-4 inhibitors (such as Januvia, Onglyza and Trajenta): You can take it with or without a meal.
- Lixisenatide (Adlyxin): Take this about an hour before your first meal of the day.
- Exenatide (Byetta): You should take this about an hour before meals.
For the full list of medicines and suggested times to take them, visit here.
The above are merely a suggestion, please consult your doctor if you have any questions or concerns about when to take your medicines.