How many of us have or are a non-diabetic family member or significant other who would be willing to wear a cgm for a week or so and compare the results? I think it would be fascinating to see first hand what normal traces of the people around us look like every day without diabetes. Who’s up for it?
I would if I had extra sensors, but I only get just enough each month (paying OOP). Did you see the post on the LADA Facebook group? Wife had her non-d husband wear a Libre sensor and shared pics of the comparison between hers and his?
I saw something on there but haven’t actually seen any results yet… I think it’s a great idea though
My wife volunteered. I’ll see if I can get her plugged in on Thursday night.
Are you taking food requests?
I would actually like to see what the cgm looks like with 75 carbs of Swedish Fish consumed within a five minute period.
That shouldn’t be a problem.
My perception is, based on the times I’ve tested her vs other adults (not that many) that she tends to keep a relatively strait line even compared to other non diabetics… will be interesting to see. She eats pretty cleanly generally too. Although I doubt she’ll have too much difficulty making exceptions…
This will be interesting. I know some people (my dad in particular) who would probably do this, but I pay out of pocket for all my CGM supplies, so too expensive for me.
I did see results from a non-diabetic diabetes educator who wore a CGM for a week. It was pretty much flat mostly around 5 mmol/L. You couldn’t tell by looking at the graph where she had eaten, exercised, and so on. But I don’t think she did any crazy glucose challenges.
I’ve also seen a report written by a non diabetic endocrinologist wearing a cgm too where he said he frequently bounces up to 200 after eating and drops into 50s when fasting:
"In all the work with diabetes technology I’ve done, I’ve worn CGM for long periods of time. I don’t have diabetes, but I’ll eat a dessert and go up to 200 mg/dl. I’ll also drop down to 50 or 60 mg/dl. People with diabetes are comparing themselves to a false standard. The pancreas, for all of the advantages it has, still allows big excursions. It’s crazy to think it’s ideal.”
-Dr. Steven Russell (Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA) urging people with diabetes not to be too hard on themselves at the 14th North American Conference on Diabetes and Exercise in San Diego, CA, August 17-18.
Hmm, I wonder what “normal” and truly healthy is. Even within non-diabetics, there’s a spectrum of definitely not diabetic moving closer to pre-diabetic. I am definitely not one of those who thinks people stay at 83 at all times, but I also think swinging by 150 points multiple times a day might be approaching the abnormal side of things. In all the studies I’ve seen where people DO reach such levels, it’s for very short periods of time. They might spike to 200 but only stay there for 10 minutes…that’s very different from people with diabetes who can really struggle not to stay at 200 for hours. And people without diabetes can cruise at 60 for hours on end, because they know their body isn’t going to let them drop any lower than that, unlike people taking insulin…
I’ve tested non-diabetic family members (zero history of diabetes in either side of my family except my T1) and almost every one has been around 5 mmol/L. I did once get a reading of 7.3 mmol/L an hour and a half after eating pasta. But I’ve never seen anything close to 11 mmol/L (200 mg/dl) nor low.
as you say, there’s a spectrum… I’m also following a thread on fb where a young fit guy is wearing a libre alongside his diabetic wife—- same thing… shows 50ish to 200ish, but in general better regulated than a diabetics bg… spikes are briefer in duration, etc—- but there are certainly still spikes, just without the dysfunction…
Yeah, see that’s the thing. It’s comparing apples to oranges. They might spike to 200 for ten minutes. Not at all the same thing as allowing 200 as an acceptable postprandial reading for someone with diabetes when it might stay there for three or four hours… Same with lows, as I mentioned above… A non-diabetic is comfortable cruising at 60 for hours because they know their body is not going to allow them to drop any lower than that. The same isn’t true for those of us with diabetes…
Would your wife be willing to eat a lot of greasy pizza for dinner one night? I’m curious to see the spike and duration in a high fat situation.
I’m sure she could be persuaded
Yes, absolutely so. In my thinking I believe that’s why we’ve historically come to some false notions based on comparing finger stick readings of non diabetics… eg “their blood sugar is always 83”. Their BG is normal the vast majority of time time, and finger sticks aren’t likely to capture their excursions unless you’re doing them so frequently that its unrealistic… I’m hoping looking at CGM from a few non-diabetics that we actually know, not random hypothetical people or study populations, will help with our understanding of what normal actually is. We need more than 1 person to do it to get a meaningful picture though. Any other volunteers?
Because I know they’re diabetes hoarders like myself and can probably scrounge up a transmitter and sensor— I nominate the following——
Hmm… any other nominations?
I’m sure normal people have spikes. But the important thing and big difference between us and normals is the time a spike lasts.
A normal’s pancreas will be aggressively right on the situation, and the spike will only be momentary. But until we have insulin that works just like the stuff that comes out of the pancreas we as diabetics will suffer at least comparatively long excursions.
Although Afrezza is a start, it’s not quite there yet.
Ha, good luck talking her into that!
No, good luck to you!
It’d be a telling case study to see what happens to a non diabetics blood sugar when they eat with you!
So, I have done this before a few times, with some extra sensors though I was not meticulous about tracking different foods.
What I found:
- Spiking up to 140 was not at all unusual…but I was usually down from there in 10 minutes below 120.
- Pizza made me hit 140 and stay there… all night long.
- Pancakes made me spike to the 180s one time – that was when I was pregnant though.
- I spent a considerable amount of time between 60 and 70 mg/DL. I once ticked down to 59 and then the next reading my body had instantly notched me up to 60. I felt shaky at that point and a little bit more tired in the 60 to 70 range but otherwise fine.
- In general, the average BG I had corresponded to a lower A1C than I typically find when I get the lab test.
- Milk products (yogurt) made me spike more than you’d think they should. So a glass of milky chai with one teaspoon of sugar would spike me to 120 where, say, I wouldn’t even go over 100 with chia seed pudding.
- Most of the day I was below 100, usually about 80 or so.
- I didn’t go over 100 with whole wheat pasta.
Will be curious to see what your wife finds, @Sam!
The numbers themselves are turning out to be less interesting than the experience of paying attention to her blood sugar with a glitchy sensor throughout the day… which she says has been somewhat of an eye opener about how confusing it can be… lol and that’s with a perfectly healthy metabolism, eating whatever she wants, and not using insulin…
Makes one appreciate how truly miraculous the body is. That it can manage BG’s in basically a flat-line fasion is just incomprehensible to insulin-dependent diabetics. The hours, labor, hard work that go into doing what the body does all by itself without much effort at all (at least that we can see) just baffles me.