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Why Perfectly Healthy People Are Using Diabetes Monitors

TIME Health For more, visit TIME Health. For about a month, Tabb Firchau, an entrepreneur living in Seattle, has been wearing a continuous glucose monitor (CGM), a federally approved medical device that tracks blood sugar levels for people with diabetes. The CGM patch has a small needle that probes the inside of his arm, and a sensor that tracks changes to his blood sugar in real-time. The data is then sent to his smartphone. Firchau bought his CGM off eBay for about $300. “I track almost everything, from sleep to exercise,” says Firchau. “I’ve been trying to learn why some days I feel fantastic, and other days I don’t. I had a cinnamon roll recently and my blood glucose doubled in 60 minutes. The monitor helps you understand the costs of the decisions you are making.” He couldn’t get one from his doctor, because Firchau doesn’t actually have diabetes. Rather, he’s part of a small but growing group of people who are wearing CGMs to track—and then hack—what goes on in their own bodies. And if enterprising startups like Sano Intelligence, which Gizmodo wrote about in February, are successful, a CGM marketed to the general public may not that be far off. A health Continue reading >>

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Popular Questions

  1. Gee10

    I'm talking about cleaning eating, keto, slow carb, etc.

  2. Ssutuanjoe

    The fact of the matter is that what most people consider "low carb" these days is actually a pretty "normal" diet, at least as far as recommended portions are considered.
    So when most people go from eating french toast for breakfast, spaghetti for lunch, and then pork chops with garlic bread for dinner...them saying "I'm going low carb!" and just having 1/2 cup of noodles for lunch seems like a huge change, and it is for them. However, as far as how much they should've been normally taking in? Eh, even though that could be considered a little low, that gets a little toward the normal side of things compared to the carb fest in the previous example.
    Anyway, your question was regarding true low carb or keto diets. Ok, very low carb and keto diets do promote weight loss. They promote weight loss by putting your body into a kind of "starvation" mode (you're ketotic, hence the name of the diet).
    However, weight loss and health aren't the same thing, are they? If you live an extremely sedentary lifestyle and have no plans of changing (say, you're a programmer who works 10 hours a day at a desk), then a keto diet is a nice, easy and fast way to cut pounds. But, to be honest, I don't know a single physician out there who would recommend a keto diet to someone who's extremely active (i.e. training for a marathon, works out 5 days a week, etc).
    At the end of the day, I'd recommend being very scrutinizing over what you read about these diets. People like to say "Hey! Look! This study says that keto is super safe and effective!", "Hey! Cavemen used to subsist on these diets and live til their 60s at least!", or "This is a safe way to lose weight!"...but I've never seen a long-term study on the diet plan (maybe a nutritionist has?). So I'm wary to say that you could spend the next 5 years on the keto diet without any adverse effects, and I certainly won't say that you can spend the rest of your life on it.
    tl;dr -- Understanding what "low carb" means, not being taken by 'gimmick' diet plans, and understanding that you can lose weight safe and effectively with 30min of exercise/day and eating a well balanced diet might be all you need to know :)

  3. I_Like_Spaghetti


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