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Denying Diabetes – Humalog vs Novolog

humalog vs novolog

There’s the old expression ‘what goes up, must come down’. That is of course related to the laws of gravity, but in a very indirect way perhaps we can relate it to a diabetic’s blood sugar levels. They go up after eating, and bringing them down is essential unless you want to take on all the health risks associated with elevated blood glucose levels. Now even people without diabetes will know that insulin is what makes that happen, and two of the more well known ones are Humalog and Novolog. If we compare Humalog vs Novolog, what’s the difference?

The truth is there aren’t many, and the most important thing to know is that both are a good insulin for diabetics and proven to be able to reduce blood glucose levels to 7% or lower. Why that number? Well, it’s related to the A1c hemoglobin test that is the standard for determining whether or not diabetics have their blood sugar under control. Anything above 7% indicates you’re not getting what you need out of your insulin dose, but again if we’re looking at Humalog vs Novolog both are fairly reliable in being able to get you to sub 7%.

One aspect of all this that every diabetic will have questions about – in America at least – is why is insulin so expensive in America? It’s somewhat staggering that people need to pay so much for a medicine that is so totally necessary for their health, but it is what it is. With that understood, we’ll look at Humalog vs Novolog cost here too.

The Everyday Routine

Visit the Humalog website and you’ll see that they refer to their product as ‘mealtime’ insulin. Novolog doesn’t, but it’s as much of one as Humalog is. So what’s meant by mealtime insulin? This will again be something that needs no explanation for diabetics, but for the rest of us some explanation may be needed and it’s probably going to be a nice break from discussions exclusively about Humalog vs Novolog. Not exactly the most engaging stuff, right?

Here’s one way of putting it; if a diabetic were to starve him or herself then they wouldn’t have to worry about managing blood sugar levels. They’d have to worry about a whole lot of other things, like being emaciated and, you know, dying eventually but they wouldn’t have to concern themselves with blood glucose levels or taking insulin every day.

That’s because it’s eating that pushes blood sugar levels up for diabetics, but in truth eating does that for all of us. It’s just that for those of us who don’t have diabetes it’s not a problem. If you’re not a diabetic, be both thankful and willing to do what it takes to not become on in the future. Eat right, maintain a healthy body weight, and learn why you should avoid refined white sugar like the plague!

Diabetics take insulin before eating because that way it starts to work in advance of their blood sugar being elevated as a result of them enjoying their meal – something they need to do, and should be able to do, just like the rest of us.

Humalog vs Novolog – the Details

Alright, so we know these are both mealtime insulins, but what allows them to have such a distinction when maybe other insulins don’t. It’s basically this – both Humalog and Novolog are regarded as ‘fast-acting’ insulins, and in order to be part of that club an insulin needs to prove itself to be able to start lowering blood sugar levels within five to 15 minutes of being introduced to the bloodstream.

This is why you can take them before you eat, and be fairly assured that your blood sugar levels are going to countered once the food you eat starts to push them upwards. All we’ve done so far in our discussion of Humalog vs Novolog is take about how they’re similar, but we should at least spend some time pointing out the differences too.

We’ll start with constituency. Each of these medications contains a different type of insulin, despite the fact they work the same way and with a similar level of effectiveness. Humalog contains insulin lispro, with Novolog contains insulin aspart. Both Humalog and Novolog can be used for either Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, and for adults with either type there’s no guidelines around ages. But for children with Type 1 diabetes it’s good to know that the guidelines are Humalog for ages 3 and up or Novolog for ages 2 and up.

Humalog vs Novolog Cost

The last thing we’ll look at here in our evaluation of Humalog vs Novolog is the cost for each medicine. Again, there’s not getting around the fact that insulin is super pricey in America, but here’s what you can know as you look for more affordable insulin. The cost of Humalog is usually between 70 and 90 dollars for the standard 10 ml of 100 units / ml vial if you’re getting it from a pharmacy like Walgreens or Rite Aid.

If we’re going to determine one to be the cheaper insulin here, it’s definitely Humalog. Novolog is decidedly more expensive, and for the standard pack of 5 3ml flexpens will run you anywhere from 130 to 170 dollars at these same pharmacies.

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IMPORTANT NOTE: The above information is intended to increase awareness of health information and does not suggest treatment or diagnosis. This information is not a substitute for individual medical attention and should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. See your health care professional for medical advice and treatment.


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