- A Quick Overview of the Top Continuous Glucose Monitors Non Diabetics Specific
- What Is a Continuous Glucose Monitor?
- Is a CGM Worth it for Non-Diabetics?
- The Five Best CGMs for Non-Diabetics
- The Bottom Line
If you are living with diabetes, then you know how important it is to be educated and aware of your condition. Regardless of whether you’re dealing with type 1 or type 2 diabetes (or you’ve simply been diagnosed as pre-diabetic), there are symptoms to watch out for, glucose monitoring to perform and treatments to consider. Your prognosis and quality of life will be determined by how well you learn to manage your diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes is quite different from type 2 diabetes, and you can have one or the other or even both. The main difference between the two conditions is how efficiently the body is able to produce and use insulin. Type 1 diabetes sufferers experience a complete absence of insulin in the body. People with type 2 diabetes don’t have enough insulin in the body, and their body isn’t able to efficiently use what they do have.
Each person is unique with their diabetes and what they experience. Some people will need to drastically change their diet, while others benefit from routine exercise. Medications are something your doctor may feel are necessary to keep your insulin and blood sugar in check. One tool that many diabetes patients use as part of their care plan is a continuous glucose monitor.
A Quick Overview of the Top Continuous Glucose Monitors Non Diabetics Specific
|CGM for Non-Diabetics
|What you can expect
|Where to buy
|1. NutriSense CGM
|CGM for real time personalized insights, app for accountability, dietitian support for guidance
|at NutriSense's official website, there is a coupon code FIT25 for an additional $25 off savings
|2. Signos CGM
|Real time data via the Signos CGM, dietitian support, app
|at Signos's official website
|3. Veri CGM
|Up-to-date CGM insights, app, dietitian support
|at Veri's official website
|4. Levels CGM
|Real-time personalized data, Levels app
|at Level's official website
|5. FreeStyle Libre CGM
|Accurate glucose readings via CGM, app
|at FreeStyle Libre's official website
What Is a Continuous Glucose Monitor?
A continuous glucose monitor (CGM) is an electronic device that can be used by a person with diabetes to measure their glucose levels on an ongoing basis. A small, thin sensor is inserted just below the surface of the skin. This must be done by a qualified medical professional. The sensor has a chemical in it that will react with glucose that exists in the fluid between the fat cells and triggers an electrical current. A radio transmitter will be clipped to the sensor on the outside of the body.
The transmitter on a continuous glucose monitor will then connect to a transmitter that displays your glucose measurement and other statistics.
Now, CGMs were originally designed for diabetics, but there are many CGM programs out there that are tailored to non-diabetics as well. They are now for those who want to optimize their wellness, lose weight and learn about how certain foods impact their body. These CGM programs usually include an app on your phone, a CGM device and dietitian support.
What Can It Track?
A CGM tracks your glucose values and alerts you if your numbers are either too high or too low. These monitors will store your information, compiling statistics and alerting you if it suspects that you’re going to spike too high or too low. There are even continuous glucose monitors that will connect to an insulin pump, allowing you to administer your insulin as needed. CGM’s do not cause the pumps to automatically release insulin without confirmation. Some units do have the ability to temporarily stop the release of insulin if a reading detects that glucose levels are low. You have the ability to download your data at any point to share your information with your doctor or care team.
Is a CGM Worth it for Non-Diabetics?
I do want to note that continuous glucose monitors can be used by people that do not have diabetes. This unit can allow for a more personalized nutrition plan that better controls how the body will handle food upon consumption. Learning how your body reacts and being able to compile patterns in your blood glucose levels can be beneficial for people with pre-diabetes or even heart disease.
Why Use One?
There are a number of benefits associated with using a continuous glucose monitor. Let’s take a look at some of them.
Track Blood Sugar Levels
A lot of people with diabetes or pre-diabetes will start out by using finger sticks to monitor their blood glucose levels. This is simply a quick reading of what your body is doing at that exact point in time. Unfortunately, you’re left wondering whether your glucose is in the process of rising, falling or staying where it is. If you’re testing your sugars two to three times per day, there’s a lot of information that you’re missing. Whereas a continuous glucose monitor provides ongoing information that helps you better manage your condition. You’re not just getting one side of the story. You’re learning all about why your body is doing what it’s doing and what’s going to come next.
Could Lose Weight
When the body is experiencing high levels of glucose, this can lead to weight gain. Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t know much about their glucose numbers or how their diet is truly affecting them. Along with a weight loss program and diet, a continuous glucose monitor can help you lose weight.
Could Help You Eat Healthier
There has been a great deal of research performed on the use of CGMs which have determined that this simple piece of technology can reduce episodes of hypoglycemia. People who have elevated A1C levels have been able to really adjust their lifestyle and diet accordingly to prevent diabetic complications. A1c tests measure your average blood sugar over the course of two to three months. You have the ability to set the threshold on your monitor, so you receive alerts when slight changes occur or when there is a more serious situation to be concerned with. A lot of people choose to be more conservative and set their alerts to just the slightest changes so appropriate action can take place to avoid hypoglycemia. Whether this be eating a light meal or eating less glucose at your next meal, a CGM helps you regulate your diet more.
Can You Get a CGM If You Don’t Have Diabetes?
While most medical professionals will approve the use of a CGM for people with diabetes only, there are more frequent scenarios where people without diabetes are receiving these monitors. It appears that a continuous glucose monitor can greatly help someone that is pre-diabetic or borderline pre-diabetic. It’s much easier to reverse pre-diabetes than it is to manage diabetes or reverse it later on. Diabetes can greatly affect your quality of life and your health, so it makes sense to inform yourself as early on as possible regarding what your glucose and insulin levels are doing.
Does Wearing a CGM Hurt?
The process of having the sensor inserted under the skin usually doesn’t cause any kind of discomfort or pain. Usually, the sensor is inserted on the back of the arm in the area of the tricep. Once it has been placed, the person wearing the device shouldn’t feel anything.
If wearing it on your arm isn’t something you feel comfortable doing, you can put it on the lower abdomen area where there is some extra fat. Many people wear it here and have zero pain, plus the sensor tracks everything perfectly.
The Five Best CGMs for Non-Diabetics
If you’re looking to utilize a CGM but are not diabetic, I’ve compiled a list of the top 5 CGMs for non-diabetics. This information should help you determine which device would be beneficial based on the results that you’re hoping to achieve.
#1. NutriSense CGM
The NutriSense continuous glucose monitoring system features a small device that sticks to the back of your arm. You wear the device for two full weeks to compile data for 24 hours a day. You can view all of this data from the NutriSense app on your phone, not to mention you get expert advice from a registered dietician.
This product has been developed so that people can reduce their risk of diabetes, prevent heart disease, lose weight and much more. The ultimate goal is to understand your body more so you can alter your relationship with food in a way that benefits your health. You don’t feel anything when you’re wearing the NutriSense device, and you can keep it on when you sleep and shower. You do need a prescription, but you can go through NutriSense to obtain that.
To get started, you’ll need to complete a health questionnaire. This determines if you’re eligible to receive a CGM. If you are approved through NutriSense, you will receive two sensors shipped right to your door. They can each be worn for 14 days at a time. You get two new sensors each month. The company recommends that you compile data for approximately 12 months for the best results and for the opportunity to make changes and see how they affect your health.
- Reinforces good eating habits
- Shows you how your body reacts to food
- You also gain insight into how stress and sleep affect your health and mood
- Tracks your data
- Holds you accountable
- You will need to obtain a prescription through Nutrisense before buying their CGM
#2. Signos CGM
The Signos continuous glucose monitor is offered as part of a weight loss program that utilizes smart technology and artificial intelligence to provide you with real time data. Depending on how your body reacts to food while you’re wearing the monitor, you’ll receive information for personalized meal ideas and an exercise routine that will complement a healthy lifestyle. You’ll be able to achieve your weight loss goals in a very efficient amount of time compared to using a one-size-fits-all approach to losing weight.
Signos believes that in order to lose weight, you need to closely track your glucose response. They break their subscription service down into three different tiers so you can choose what will work best for your health needs and your budget. One month currently costs $399, three months costs $747 and six months is priced at $1194. This is a bit expensive, but for these prices, you receive access to the Signos weight loss app, Signos equipment and a medical consultation with a physician that can prescribe the Signos CGM for you.
When you first receive your CGM, you will need to calibrate the system. In order to do so, you will have to drink a glucose drink and monitor your body’s response to that specific amount of glucose. It’s 50 grams of glucose in one serving, so make sure you check with your doctor if you have any kind of medical condition that could affect your body’s ability to process that glucose (such as diabetes).
- Specifically designed with weight loss in mind
- Provides information on how your body reacts to specific foods
- You can choose between different subscription options
- Supplemental information offered for dietary and lifestyle changes
- Easy to use app
- You may be presented with a waiting list to access the program due to its popularity
- You have to calibrate your unit by drinking a 50-gram glucose drink
#3. Veri CGM
The Veri continuous glucose monitor is a disposable unit that measures your glucose levels for 14 days at a time. It can be used by non-diabetics that simply want to find out more about how their food choices are affecting their health and weight. Results are provided instantly through an app on your smartphone.
The process of applying the Veri glucose monitor to your arm takes less than five minutes. After cleaning the area with a provided alcohol swab, you unwrap the sensor cap and hook it to the applicator that is also included. All you have to do is press the applicator into the upper portion of your arm until the monitor is in place. In order to get your data, you have to swipe your camera over the logo on the Veri monitor. You can do this whenever you want, as many times as you want throughout the course of the day.
You have a few different options for how you can view your data, including data on workouts, sleep and meals. You’re given a score from one to 10 that indicates how well your body is handling potential glucose spikes. This information can be used to target why you feel low in energy, why you’re not losing weight and what’s affecting your mood and sleep.
- Helps you find the right foods and dietary habits for your body
- Allows you to stabilize your glucose
- Automatically connects your sleep and exercise data
- Helps you understand how your lifestyle affects your metabolism
- Includes a community of more than 4,000 users
- Works with your smart device
- Veri tracks your interstitial glucose levels, which don’t rise as fast as your actual glucose levels. This means your results may not be 100 percent accurate.
#4. Levels CGM
Levels is a glucose monitoring program that allows you to gather data which will explain how your daily food and lifestyle choices are affecting your blood sugar and your health. As time goes on, you’ll be able to learn how to balance your glucose in a way that helps you lose weight, keeps your energy consistent and supports your healthy lifestyle choices.
There’s a little more work involved with this CGM option. You’ll be required to log your meals and snacks into the Levels app. Levels will then give you a food score that indicates whether that’s a wise choice or not. So, instead of simply eating something and seeing how your body reacts, Levels is essentially warning you that you might experience a glucose spike. You might skip that choice and opt for something that has a lower glycemic index. As a registered dietician, I love that you have this kind of information at your fingertips while you're doing your meal planning.
- Features personalized insights
- Helps you understand your metabolic health
- Allows you to make changes that affect your energy levels, sleep cycle, weight management and more
- Provides suggestions on how you can positively impact your health
- Increases the efficiency of your workouts
- You have to scan the device to see your results. Nothing is automatically uploaded to your phone.
- There is frequently a wait list for the Levels program
The FreeStyle Libre continuous glucose monitoring device is designed for diabetic individuals so they can better monitor their glucose levels without having to perform frequent finger pricks. It’s worn at all times in the upper portion of the arm and connects to your iPhone or Android device for real time results for your blood sugar numbers.
Whether you’re taking medications for your diabetes, or your doctor would like you to monitor your condition, this program from FreeStyle Libre gives you a lot of freedom. Not to mention, this is a much safer and simpler process to use. By measuring your interstitial glucose levels, you’ll be able to get control of your health. Results are read every few minutes and transfer directly to your phone without any action from you. You can choose to look at your phone’s data whenever you desire.
FreeStyle Libre has an alarm feature that you can use to find out about any large spikes or falls in glucose. You can look back on past data when talking to your doctor. It’s one of the smallest CGM devices compared to similar products.
- Uncover glucose patterns
- Maintain better glucose control
- Eliminates the need for finger sticks
- Access to real time glucose readings
- This device is designed for people with diabetes or pre-diabetes
The Bottom Line
Managing your diabetes or even just taking your health into your own hands very much relies on your ability to control your blood sugar levels. A continuous glucose monitor can assist with this process by offering a convenient and real-time option for monitoring blood glucose. These devices allow for better glycemic control, prevent scenarios where you’re feeling lightheaded or hungry and can drastically improve your overall well-being.
Should Non-Diabetics Use a CGM?
There’s no reason at all why a non-diabetic person can’t utilize the information that is provided by a continuous glucose monitor. In fact, as a dietician I feel that these units are extremely enlightening if you’re trying to learn more about your glucose levels and how your body is reacting to your current diet. It’s not uncommon for people to be experiencing high levels of glucose in the body and not realize it, but it’s greatly impacting their ability to lose weight.
If you’re hesitant to use a continuous glucose monitor and have not been diagnosed with diabetes, you may want to talk to your doctor to find out more. This is an important decision that can really impact your health moving forward. It’s ideal that you’re making the right decision and then choosing the monitor that will be most affordable, practical and informative.