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Thiazolidinediones (TZDs or Glitazones) for Type 2 Diabetes

Medications that lower insulin resistance

Thiazolidinediones—sometimes shortened to TZDs or glitazones—work on lowering your insulin resistance, which is the underlying problem for many people with type 2 diabetes.

How they work: TZDs make your body produce new fat cells, and those cells are actually more sensitive to insulin—that is, they allow insulin to do its job. If you’re insulin resistant, your cells don’t allow insulin to do its job (which is to get glucose into the cells). The new fat cells, then, can eventually lower your blood glucose level by making your body use insulin and glucose better.
Special notes: The first-generation thiazolidinediones actually caused serious liver damage in a few people.   The second-generation TZDs shouldn’t do that, but it’s still something to keep in mind, especially if you already have liver problems.
Examples of TZDs:
  • Pioglitazone (Actos)
  • Rosiglitazone (Avandia)


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Combination Medications for Type 2 Diabetes