Are CGM worth the cost?

Your comments and opinions?

Are CGM worth the cost?

Using a data collection program/service such as Levels, NutriSense or ?

A one month subscription to NutriSense was definitely an eye-opener to me, well worth it. At some point I plan to buy another month but I’m not convinced that regular monitoring is justified.

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I was able to get a prescription for a Dexcom device - did 2 separate two week tests to really watch how my normal diet affected my glucose level. The data was reinforcing - I could keep it in a good range but was amazing to see what a couple of Chik Fil-a sandwiches and a lemonade would do to my glucose level for a couple of hours. Glad I did it. If I remember, my insurance wouldn’t cover it - but Costco discounted it substantially when it wasn’t covered. Still $300 or so.

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Its really nice - but is it worth it? Thats a harder question. I have a friend who has diabetes and he has extra Freestyle libra sensors that he gives me, so its been free for me - I think I’ve worked through 6 or 8 sensors (each with a 2 week lifespan) over the past two years.

For me I found it really helpful to see the pre and post results when I was first testing out canagliflozin, acarbose, and empagliflozin… and more generally to understand my body and how it responds to food. Right now I use it perhaps 1 month out of every 4 months… just to check in on things.

Perhaps try to buy some sensors off a friend (and just use your phone as the reader). I think the sensors (freestyle libra) are about $50 each. Or try to get your doctor to prescribe one for you to try, but not covered by insurance.

I found the other CGMs like Levels and Nutrisense too expensive for what I need.

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I found them useful for checking which foods are “safe”, which should be avoided, or what you can do to mitigate the glucose spike, and the crash that can follow. And it is nice during water fast: before that, during longer fasts, I used to check my blood amost every hour for glucose and ketones, and it can get hard on your fingers.
I tried one service like Levels and found it much too expensive for what it does. Buying the very same devices directly from Abbott cut the costs to half and does the job very well.

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like most things, it has the law of diminishing returns
in the beginning you learn a lot, but over time it dwindles.
it is also a good motivator for good eating, as you get immediate feedback

I wore one for a while, and then stopped.
I now only wear one when I am making changes that I want to see, and if I am trying to lose weight, and want the additional “policeman”

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“I was first testing out canagliflozin, acarbose, and empagliflozin”
Please, what are your thoughts and results when comparing canagliflozin, acarbose, and empagliflozin?

I found the SGLT-2 inhibitors to be very effective in flattening blood glucose spikes. Eventually I found I had a significant side effect with Canagliflozin of “exhaustion” that was rather bizarre after many months of increased energy and lower sleep requirements with rapamycin. I cover it here in my earlier report on my canagliflozin trial. I then moved to empagliflozin to try it out and found it to have (for me) all the benefits of canagliflozin without the side effect of exhaustion - so I’m staying on Empagliflozin.

I hated acarbose in my first trial of the drug - the gas it caused was pretty overwhelming. But then I heard about the link of the negative side effects to wheat in the diet, and since trying it again with this dietary change its been much more tolerable and the gas is a fairly minor issue. So - I use acarbose occasionally now.

I haven’t recently done the comparison between acarbose and empagliflozin with my CGM on - but will try that at some time in the future.

I think NutriSense and Freestyle Libre are the same. I”ve used for several months, but I found it to be wildly inaccurate compared to a finger stick. NutriSense even told me this “is expected” but I could see little value in the app telling me BG was down when the finger stick said the opposite.

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I got a dexcom G6, just out of curiosity. Since I’m keto, it was a pretty straight line but I still was happy I tried it for 10 days ( how long a sensor lasts). I had a couple things I tried while on it (glyNAC which I thought raised my glucose by quite a bit but I was on the big dose). If you do the math it’s about $10/day which is outrageous. Calibration does no good, it was disappointing that the accuracy was only within about 10. The sensors are really good for about a month, but they lock them out after 10 days so they can sell more.

When my son had an issue after his return from college, we put one of my other sensors on him, clicked in the transmitter and it wouldn’t work. Come to find out they made the transmitter to only work for 90 days from first use. They run $250.

I don’t know the rules about profanity on this site so I can’t accurately tell you how I feel.

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