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Can you recommend testing meter for type 2 diabetic


Hello I’m new.I was diagnosed with type 2 6weeks ago and my head is in a whirl been given diet and excercise sheets but just feel so confused Iv been told right now can be controlled with diet and exercise but how do I know if what I’m doing is helping? Why are type 2 not given testing meters? Im looking to purchase meter although Iv realised its strips that our real cost but I need to know can anyone advice a good simple to use meter? I have added complication of having severe social anxiety and am terrible at talk face to face I just want to rush back to safety of house.Sorry it’s long txt just have so many questions and fears

9 Replies

Deep breath. You can fix this. What's your HbA1c and fasting/postprandial numbers? What kind of diet advice have they given you?

You're right that the testing meters make money on the testing strips, but look at it this way: you're only going to use them for a few weeks (months at the outside) as you gain understanding of your body's reaction to various foods. If you do this right, a year from now, you won't be diabetic anymore and you can just put the glucose meter on eBay!

Just buy the best one you can afford. Price is a good indicator of quality. Accuracy and reliability is what's important here.

It's important to realise that Diabetes T2 is not a disease as such. It can certainly evolve into one if you don't get it sorted, but right now, you have every chance of reversing it, or at least getting it firmly under control (I'm assuming this was caught early?).

The underlying problem is this: for many years you've been eating foods that provide glucose (from starchy foods) far in excess of your body's needs. Your pancreas has been set off on a war of attrition, producing ever-greater amounts of insulin to force your body's cells to take up all that glucose. Now it's started to say: "meh, what's the point?". Don't beat yourself up about this: it's easy to do in the modern environment, full of unhealthy foods that disrupt your appetite. Focus on the future.

Fortunately your body has an alternative energy pathway available: dietary fat. Stop assaulting your body with excess starches, replace them with fat calories, and your body will have a chance to recover. If you're confused about where to go with that, try the LCHF forum:

There are plenty of people there eating a low-glycemic diet for general health reasons, plus a couple of diabetics who have successfully sorted themselves out. It's not difficult or unpleasant, but it does involve un-learning a lot of dietary folklore and myth.

You might also like to read up on NHS GP David Unwin, who is successfully treating his diabetic patients simply with diet counselling.

With a blood glucose monitor in hand, you'll be able to get a solid understanding of which foods send your blood glucose through the roof, and which ones keep it on an even keel. You don't need to take my word for it about LCHF: if you've been advised to eat a low-fat, calorie-controlled diet, feel free to give it a try, take some blood readings, and prove to yourself that it doesn't work (it really doesn't, and there's no theoretical reason why it should). Then try the other way.

Oh ... on the subject of exercise, a daily walk will be fine. There's no need to go to the gym. If you're overweight it could be a bad idea (too much stress on your joints), and I assume you wouldn't want to anyway given your social anxiety.

I can just re-emphasise what TheAwfulToad has said. Consider LCHF diet to reverse your T2D.

Most meters are simple to use. You may look at diabetes. website for brief reviews of the glucometers available in the market.Look at the price of test strips also when comparing two meters.

You should also inquire at your medical centre/practice if you qualify for test strips. If you do then they will suggest which meter you should buy.

The libre freestyle continuous glucose monitor is a great way to understand how different food and exercise affect your blood sugar. The sensor goes on your arm and lasts for 14 days. It automatically records your blood sugar every 15 minutes and you can take manual readings every minute. unfortunately it requires a prescription in the US. If you can get your doctor to write a prescription for even just one sensor (and the reader), you will get a wealth of information. I was shocked to see that I routinely spike between 200 and 250 after every meal despite eating what I thought were low glycemic foods. Since then, I have been using it it to identify the culprits and modify my diet.

If you are stuck with finger pricking then start testing about one hour after meals and continue for the next hour or two. That's where the spikes from food will show up. For a long time, I tested my fasting levels which was a total waste of time and testing strips.

Ask the nurse at your doctors surgery if she has any samples. I got my first one that way and my next from one of the many offers on the Diabetics web site.

Hi supermum, talking via text is just as good as face to face and you can take your time in any posts and answers. I hope though that you can find away around your fear of social contact and any anxiety that goes with it as meeting people is a good way yo get mutual support.

I’m a type 2 and wanted a small portable blood glucose meter so ended up with a Nexus from Gluco/Rx. It works for what I want to use it for. I have had an Accu-chel Aviva in the past which was more expensive in strips. I know someone who has a libre freestyle prescribed in the NHS as they are a “brittle” type 1 who doesn’t get symptoms before having a Hypo. Most type 2’s wouldn't need such a Rolls Royce of BG meters as it takes a reading every few minutes and you can download it to a smartphone by swiping it near the meter.

I used it to find what foods gave be fast highs and what gave me a far preferable slower higher with a lower plateau. After a few months I stopped using it on a regular basis and now a check once a week or so is fine. If you have 6 monthly HbA1c tests that may be enough once you have gkod blood glucise cintrol back.

GI index is a good indication for an individual food. French fries (what the Brits call chips) are about 75, which is high (glucose is 100). Cauliflower is about 10 which is low. What no one tells you is that if you had cauliflower with french fries in roughly equal amounts and ate them together, then the GI of the mixture is probably around 40 - 45. So have plenty if low GI veg and you may avoid the peaks (baked or boiled potato is better if you have to have potato anyway). Low fat diets using bought food are dodgy, look at the label and see how much sugar has been added to give it taste.

I pay lip service to LCHF but am probably 100 - 150 grams of carbs a day not the low values recommended. I do get close to 10 portions of fruit and veg most days and my weight has stabilised at 2 stone less than when diagnosed, on the dietician’s target weigh that I was set. I think one year of Metformin tablets helped me to lose weight and for over 5 years now I’ve been diet and exercise.

Home cooking with fresh ingredients is an ideal approach. Beware of anything with additives you don’t understand. I saw a “rule” elsewhere that says “Don’t buy anything with an ingredient that you can’t pronounce” to which I’d add or spell if someone else says it!

sumamum in reply to Bob00752

Thank you .Im just finding everything overwhelming I’m try get as much information as I can and im getting there (I think) Your right I don’t need/want a meter to read every few minutes I would just like to read morning after eat or exercise try and get an idea of what I’m do that’s correct or not.I would hope in time to have gained enough knowledge on triggers or foods actions that beneficial that I wouldn’t need to read so often.Its also difficult because I have over ailments and sometimes il feel terrible but I don’t know if it’s to do with the diabetes,another condition or a combination of high/low count react with another condition.I know I’m not a good patient as I try to self treat everything but sometimes the thought/fear of been out in public is greater fear than fears of what illness could result in.I wish I could just pull myself together I used to be very sociable and I do have better days but never really normal.Thank you to everyone who has replied to me you have given me so much good advice and lots to research and I feel much more positive.Its so nice to feel support and care from strangers but you understand what I’m feeling in relation to diabetes

Bob00752 in reply to sumamum

We all need some good news to keep us feeling happy. Unfortunately the politicians in the UK and elsewhere seem to be "organising" (or disorganising) things to ruin any positive expectations. I think what you do about the possibility of diabetes depends on the individual. Take any warnings seriously but don't go OTT (over the top) and get unneccesarily worried.

GPs try to treat one symptom at a time. Good if it works but sometimes there is more than one thing that needs fixing. However if you aren't yet diabetic there is an interesting dilemma. Do you go all out to get things under control, do you not worry until things get worse or do you do the sensible middle ground thing of making a good effort to change things for the better without making your life a misery in doing it. Hint: I think the middle way is by far the best!

Everyone's blood glucose goes up after they take on food and drink (unless it is water or has no carbs). I never take my meter readings until at least 2 hours, preferably 3 to 4 hours after a meal. Yes you get better values that way but you don't get hung up about high readings. My normal reading times are before breakfast, before lunch, before evening meal or last thing at night. at present I only take a reading once or maybe twice a week as I have a good idea after over 6 years of how my blood glucose varies.

I consider myself reasonably sociable, but as I get older, the social opportunities are less involved with alcoholic drink and more tea and coffee (or water!) and I do try and pass on the biscuits/cookies/cakes! If your friends are good at talking then there's no need to take on extra carbs while listening and talking yourself! If they insist, take a half or third portion and make it last so you don't get offered seconds. Say you are savouring the great taste of their cooking or whatever.... Works for me!

Just remember that a reading from BG meter is only a guide - strangely enough there is no official standard as to what it should be. I only found this out as I had accumulated 3 different meters and they all gave different readings - the difference I thought was too much so I asked and that was the answer given. It was also suggested I just stick to the one meter for future use.

I’m pretty new to this as well but I couldn’t manage without a monitor. I got mine from Amazon (Accuchek) but I think you can get cheaper ones that will do the job. I used to test first thing in the morning (fasting). Then before I eat and then 2 hours later. I was using too many strips so I just test when waking, after meals and before bed. Diet changes will take a while to kick in, but exercise has an immediate impact so I counted on activity as a top priority in the early days. I power walk for at least 30 minutes several times a day if I have time. I am trying to loose weight and I’m eating low carb. Absolutely no sugar (including honey or maple syrup) and no white bread, pasta or rice. I hope this helps. Good luck.

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