With considerable research confirming the effectiveness of CGM in managing both type 1 and 2 diabetes and improving the quality of glycemic control, the adoption of CGMs is rapidly increasing globally.
What’s a CGM?
Continuous glucose monitor (CGM) is a wearable device that – as the name implies – measures glucose levels in the body continuously throughout the day and night. Through a quick, painless insertion process, the CGM is affixed to the skin and tracks in real-time the user’s blood sugar levels without ever having to prick their finger for blood.
CGMs have been historically used by people with diabetes to help manage their blood sugar levels and make informed decisions about their insulin dosing and lifestyle habits. The collected data from CGMs is also often used by doctors to evaluate patients’ progress and recommend alterations to their routines and treatment plans.
But beyond their use in diabetes, recent research has shown that CGMs may also be a useful tool for managing obesity.
How Do CGMs Help With Weight Loss?
When blood sugar (or glucose) is high, the pancreas is triggered to produce more insulin to move that glucose out of the blood and into the cells. For weight loss, this is problematic because, when supplied with too much glucose and too much insulin, the body resorts to storing glucose as fat that gets deposited in the body.
So while you might think you’re humming along just fine, your body may be in a chronic state of insulin production because of the chronically high blood glucose levels which makes weight loss really difficult to achieve.
Stable blood glucose, on the other hand, means that cells aren’t getting flooded with insulin, which in turn gives the body time to burn fat for energy in between meals – thus resulting in weight loss.
Using a CGM for weight loss can thus help users in building an understanding of how different foods and activities affect their glucose levels, and in subsequently customizing their diets and treatment plans to improve their insulin response and keep their blood glucose in check.
Here is a guide on how blood sugar may react to different foods and activities.
How To Interpret CGM Data?
You don’t need a physician to help you read your CGM data. Keep these 4 tips in mind.
- Look for trends – Are your levels consistently high or low? Is there a pattern to when they are high or low?
- Identify highs and lows – High glucose levels, or hyperglycemia, can be caused by a variety of factors, such as eating too many carbs, not enough physical activity, or not taking enough medication. Low glucose levels, or hypoglycemia, can be caused by the opposite.
- Always correlate your levels with activity and meals – this can help you understand how different activities and meals affect your glucose levels.
- Review alerts and alarms – CGM devices often have alerts and alarms that can alert you to high or low glucose levels. Make sure to review these alerts and understand what they mean and how to respond.
- Work with your healthcare team – if you have questions about your CGM data or how to interpret it, be sure to discuss it with your healthcare team. They can provide guidance and support to help you manage your diabetes effectively.
Making CGM Data Interpretation Easy
Our Zone.Health app gathers data from connected devices, such as Fitbit, CGM or connected weight scale, and displays them in the app in a user-friendly way that is easy to understand.
Zone.Health uses CGM data as part of other important parameters to give continuous feedback to our members in real time and suggest corrective and proactive actions based on the information received or trends observed. This instant feedback is intended to keep our members engaged and, most importantly, to make compliance to their treatment management easy.