In this section I am going to cover glucose meters and CGM’s (continuous glucose monitor’s). Our glucose meter is one of our most essential pieces of kit even for a T2 diabetic that doesn’t take insulin. Seeing what certain foods to your blood sugar levels are real eye opener and I’d strongly suggest getting a CGM even if it’s only for a short period of 2 weeks or so.
For a diabetic not to know what their blood sugars are would be like putting somebody in the middle of nowhere without a map or compass and say now find your way home, it would be nearly impossible. That’s why it’s so essential to know what your blood sugars are as much as possible during the day, it certainly helps me achieve tighter control and non diabetic hba1c’s. I certainly wouldn’t be comfortable dosing insulin without knowing what my blood sugars are. Luckily now we also have CGM’s to add to our toolkit. I currently self fund a Dexcom G6 and have been using one since November 2018. I have self funded the Freestyle Libre twice which is manufactured by Abbotts But however it didn’t seem to agree with me, that could of been where it had to be placed though. CGM’s are like something out of buck rogers to me and something I could of only dreamed about when I first got diagnosed with diabetes back in June 2000. It wasn’t until I had, had diabetes for 16 years that eventually got to try one. All I can say its a complete game changer for me, the alarms at night are fantastic and I now have excellent control over my blood sugars. Obviously the low carb is really the secret behind that but as an add on tool a CGM is amazing. I can now see my blood sugars on my Apple Watch on my wrist anytime I want. A CGM measures our blood sugars around the clock sending a reading from a sensor and transmitter placed on the abdomen every 5 minutes to a receiver or your mobile phone. There are a few different CGM’s including a flash glucose monitor from Abbott that I mentioned above and now a 180 day one that is actually implanted under your skin called the Eversense. I will provide links below for all mentioned so you can find out about them in more detail if you want.
Testing your blood sugars
- Always make sure you have washed your hands and have dried them on a clean towel or a paper towel to save any cross contamination, a major tip is never use a towel used in the kitchen as this will more than likely have come into contact with food stuffs and may contaminate your finger and give a false reading. this has happened to me more than once.
- Never store your blood monitor in the same pocket as your glucose, again you don’t want to contaminate your blood monitoring equipment with glucose.
- Don’t be afraid to take your blood sugars when out in public, don’t feel you need to hide away in the toilets to do it, they aren’t always the cleanest of places.
- Keep a diary of your blood sugars, even for the most seasoned diabetics this information is invaluable, my blood monitor actually plugs into my iPhone and records all of my measurements for me and even sends them to my health app.
- Building monitoring into your daily routine is essential to good diabetes care and should be an important part of your self care, before you know it becomes second nature and you won’t even notice your doing it half the time, I use a CGM and still regularly check my blood sugars.