How can continuous glucose monitoring improve blood sugar control?

Those who live with diabetes know how difficult it is to control their blood sugar levels, as our bodies react differently to various foods and to the world around us, such as stress or even the time of day. Checking blood sugar levels a couple of times a day can be very misleading, as blood sugar may vary wildly between readings. Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) enables people with diabetes to wear a sensor that tracks glucose trends throughout the day and night and can provide readings at five-minute intervals. You keep a log to show what you are doing throughout the day, and this is matched up later with your blood sugar readings. Some of these devices can actually communicate with an insulin pump, adjusting insulin levels automatically throughout the day, just as body chemistry does naturally for people without diabetes. But even for those who do not use a pump, knowing how your body reacts to foods and the world around you is vitally important information, whether you take insulin, pills or no medication at all. A large study published in the New England Journal of Medicine demonstrated that Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) therapy significantly reduced the A1C level in adult patients with type 1 diabetes without an increased risk of low blood sugar reactions -- always a concern when medicating to keep blood sugar readings on the low side. A person's A1C level is his or her average blood glucose level over three months.
Toby Smithson
Nutrition & Dietetics
A continuous glucose monitor (CGM) may help you and your clinicians see blood glucose patterns that can be missed from taking just a couple of blood glucose readings per day. This is helpful in making adjustments to insulin, medications, exercise or food intake depending on whether the blood sugar is rising or falling at specific times of the day. A CGM records your blood glucose readings about every 5 minutes so it gives you a more precise picture about your blood glucose levels.


William Lee Dubois
Endocrinology Diabetes & Metabolism
The number two reason for owning and wearing a CGM is to make sure your glucose-control therapy is working right for you, and for fine-tuning it. The CGM data, combined with a food and activity log, can show you in mind-numbing detail what is working right for you and what is working wrong for you in your diabetes therapy.

This is especially valuable for insulin users. You can now look at what happens while you sleep, after you eat, and when you move (as in using your body, not relocating to Cincinnati). CGM is the only way to truly get insulin pump basal rates “right.” And the same holds true for insulin corrections, insulin-to-carb ratios, and pretty much everything else in diabetes control.
Beyond Fingersticks: The art of control with continuous glucose monitoring

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Beyond Fingersticks: The art of control with continuous glucose monitoring

Everything you ever wanted to know about CGM (but didn’t know to ask)!Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM), the revolutionary technology that’s poised to completely change diabetes care, gives you...

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Diabetes mellitus (MEL-ih-tus), often referred to as diabetes, is characterized by high blood glucose (sugar) levels that result from the body’s inability to produce enough insulin and/or effectively utilize the insulin. Diabetes ...

is a serious, life-long condition and the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes is a disorder of metabolism (the body's way of digesting food and converting it into energy). There are three forms of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that accounts for five- to 10-percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes may account for 90- to 95-percent of all diagnosed cases. The third type of diabetes occurs in pregnancy and is referred to as gestational diabetes. Left untreated, gestational diabetes can cause health issues for pregnant women and their babies. People with diabetes can take preventive steps to control this disease and decrease the risk of further complications.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.