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I tried out HealthifyMe Pro and I’m not sure everyone needs continuous glucose monitoring

Have you ever ever puzzled how your physique reacts while you dig right into a decadent bowl of chocolate ice cream, or a hearty meal of butter rooster with butter naans adopted by a gulab jamun? Sadly, tens of millions of Indians who’re diabetic or prediabetic already know the reply to each of those. It sends their blood sugar ranges taking pictures up past the suitable vary. However is that this one thing everybody actually must know? Properly, HealthifyMe thinks so and can let customers who join their Professional Programme do precisely this.

HealthifyMe desires to introduce steady Blood Glucose monitoring (CGM) as a key a part of decoding what it calls ‘metabolic well being’. The sensor is caught to one in all your arms (no, it doesn’t damage) and repeatedly displays your blood sugar ranges. However earlier than you do that out, we predict it’s higher to have a chat along with your physician to determine in case you want this in any respect, as a result of not everybody is perhaps prepared to know the numbers in the proper sense.

Now, let’s speak about what HealthifyMe Professional is, what it’s making an attempt to attain, and my expertise having used this for almost two weeks.

HealthifyMe Professional: What’s it, what do you get?

CGM gadgets have been popping out of the area of high-end diabetic care over the previous few years. HealthifyMe Professional is the newest entrant with its ‘beta’ programme accessible through the app. The programme will value you between Rs 5,500 and Rs 8,000 per thirty days, although the costs are nonetheless being finalised. With the bottom plan, customers will get one sensor, which prices about Rs 4,500, 1 / 4. Plus you get entry to HealthifyMe’s prime coaches and the sensible assistant Ria.

The thought is that each one of those parts come collectively to assist the person get insights. You get a day by day ‘metabolic’ rating that’s designed that can assist you obtain your health objectives– that is based mostly on how effectively you’ve ‘maintained’ sugar ranges. The perfect vary that HealthifyMe Professional has set is 70 to 110 mg/dl for sugar ranges. Remember that these numbers should not in keeping with medical requirements — below 140 mg/dl publish meal or inside the vary of 70-180 mg/dl.

HealthifyMe Professional sensor is connected to at least one’s arm. (Picture credit score: Shruti Dhapola/Indian Specific)

The extra your sugar stays in vary, the upper your day by day rating, in accordance with the app. There’s some predictive evaluation too taking place on the premise of this. As an illustration, the app will estimate your Hba1C, an indicator of common sugar ranges over a time frame. Primarily based in your meals consumption, or the shortage of it, Ria will warn you a sugar spike or a dip.

The sensor sticks to your physique simply and HealthifyMe has added a patch to maintain it in place, often along with the higher arm. However I can see lots of people panicking the primary time they need to pin this to their arm. HealthifyMe plans to ship an skilled to the person’s home to assist them put on the sensor, however numerous diabetics stick the sensor on with none exterior assist. You’ll be able to put on the sensor for swimming or throughout your baths, but it surely can’t be submerged underwater for greater than half-hour.

The sensor is definitely Abbott’s FreeStyle Libre, really useful by many docs in India to maintain a monitor of sugar ranges in diabetics. This isn’t the primary time I’ve worn this sensor in my life. In early 2020, once I had gestational diabetes, the physician wished to trace my stats higher and obtained me to put on one, although I didn’t have entry to the info which was with the physician.
However HealthifyMe lets a person sync the sensor straight with their telephone (iOS and Android) so as to see the degrees within the HealthifyMe app. I used it with my iPhone 12 Professional Max, but it surely works with any telephone which has NFC entry.

HealthifyMe Pro Abbott’s FreeStyle Libre is the sensor being utilized by HealthifyMe Professional. (Picture supply: Shruti Dhapola/Indian Specific)

The corporate additionally has a Good Scale that calculates metrics equivalent to weight, fats proportion, muscle mass, and many others. These additionally sync straight with the HealthifyMe app through Bluetooth and add to the insights generated by the programme. The programme additionally provides entry to a free blood check that appears at numerous elements equivalent to lipid profile, vitamin deficiency, your HBA1c, liver well being, and many others.

One may sync their health tracker, equivalent to Apple Watch or Fitbit to make sure steps, and many others are famous on the app. I did this with my Fitbit, although not all trackers are supported. The train periods you document in your tracker or watch don’t get routinely synced to the app. I needed to manually enter my train periods onto HealthifyMe Professional, which is inconvenient.

Remember that HealthifyMe Professional can be accumulating numerous knowledge factors about you. Once more you should ensure that you’re okay with this as you join. HealthifyMe states all of this knowledge is encrypted and safe and that they’re GDPR compliant.

HealthifyMe Professional: Let’s speak about that Blood sugar monitor

For the reason that sensor is measuring sugar ranges from interstitial fluid — additionally referred to as tissue fluid that surrounds the physique cells — its readings will very hardly ever match with these from a glucometer which measures blood sugar straight from a prick check. Most consultants agree {that a} CGM is round 10-Quarter-hour behind within the numbers, and whereas these won’t correct on a regular basis, they might help give a development of your sugar ranges.

However typically the variations are obtrusive. As an illustration, in the future after lunch, the glucometer confirmed my blood sugar was 97 mg/dl whereas the sensor confirmed it at 167 mg/dl. In truth, one can see that the graph for that day goes proper up, crossing 200. I discovered this specific spike fascinating as a result of this was a day my carb content material was barely increased. I ate one roti, and what I believed was a ‘little bit’ of rice pulao together with my regular rooster and greens. I’ve recognized since my gestational diabetes days that rice eaten in unmeasured portions is a certain shot option to ship my sugar ranges rising. It’s seemingly this spike was captured by the sensor. However the truth that two hours later, it nonetheless confirmed a spike was worrying, although my glucometer confirmed one thing else.

HealthifyMe Pro As an illustration, in the future after lunch, the glucometer confirmed my blood sugar was 97 mg/dl whereas the sensor confirmed it at 167 mg/dl. (Picture credit score: Shruti Dhapola/Indian Specific)

Then on my son’s birthday, at 10.00am, I crossed 200 for a short interval. However hey I had cake. In truth, on a day on which I ate numerous sushi, cake and rooster qorma, my graph was going up and down. This was not shocking for me, however only a reminder that refined sugar is one thing I must keep away from attributable to my medical historical past.

I say this as somebody who spent the final 9 months making an attempt to maintain blood sugar ranges in management. I’ve additionally misplaced all of my post-pregnancy weight (round 10 kg) on this interval because of the assistance of a nutritionist/health coach (not linked to this app).
I also needs to level out that in the course of the two weeks I wore the sensor, my actions had been low, my sleep was off and so was my weight loss plan.

All of those affect blood sugar ranges. And does train make a distinction to these blood sugar spikes and hold them in management? Completely as I observed throughout my a current firm offsite. An early morning fitness center session adopted by an uphill stroll ensured that two idlis at breakfast — a certain option to spike my sugars as I’ve seen prior to now– brought on no drastic spike.

HealthifyMe Professional may even give entry to a nutritionist and train coach you’ll be able to join with, who do hold messaging. I’ve barely interacted with the train coach. However the nutritionist has continually messaged me. I additionally appreciated that she understood I used to be already on a weight loss plan plan with another person and didn’t counsel any adjustments aside from the necessity to add a salad to every meal, and observe it up with a brisk stroll, as a substitute of simply plonking myself in entrance of my laptop computer. Frankly, it would sound like boring recommendation, however it’s one which works.

HealthifyMe Pro A take a look at the times the place my sugar ranges had been spiking. On Could 5 specifically, the graph goes up and do all day given I indulged in sweets, and many others on this specific day. (Picture credit score: Shruti Dhapola/Indian Specific)

Nonetheless, I’m not solely satisfied that these sugar numbers needs to be dealt with by a nutritionist alone, particularly when the spikes are very excessive. There are additionally the medical experiences, which the nutritionist can see to advocate any areas of concern equivalent to the necessity for dietary supplements. Once more, I’d stress that solely a health care provider needs to be including dietary supplements–if wanted in any respect– to your weight loss plan.

HealthifyMe Professional: What concerning the different options, UI?

The HealthifyMe Professional programme additionally permits you to sync the sensible scale and plots your weight development. I sometimes weigh myself as soon as per week, within the early morning on an empty abdomen. The numbers are in keeping with what I’ve seen over the previous two months. I’ve misplaced the additional weight, however nonetheless want to scale back physique fats additional, which truly is a tougher problem. All of this knowledge can be seen by the nutritionist and train coach you select.

HealthifyMe Professional’s interface. (Picture credit score: Shruti Dhapola/Indian Specific)

However the person interface for Professional is usually a little cluttered at instances and it’s nonetheless a piece in progress. It’d take a couple of minutes to make sense of all the knowledge thrown at you. I additionally observed that the design modified in the course of the course of my utilization as the corporate rolled out the beta model.

There’s a devoted Professional tab within the app, the place you will note the coach, your well being experiences, the dimensions, and many others. For Professional customers, the house web page opens with a graph of their sensor knowledge, adopted by their diet knowledge for the day. That is based mostly on the meals one has logged day by day.

HealthifyMe Professional: So what’s the purpose of this program? Must you give it a attempt?

With HealthifyMe Professional, the corporate desires to evolve past simply an app to trace one’s day by day meals consumption, train, and many others with the intention to reduce weight. The brand new ‘Professional’ programme is a complicated possibility geared toward those that have began a health journey, and are eager for some extra knowledge and stats. The strategy can be designed to assist ship a extra tailor-made plan for one’s health journey, in accordance with the corporate.

You probably have been struggling to reduce weight, regardless of your greatest efforts, possibly this strategy might assist give some insights on meals or drinks which might be making this so troublesome. Sure, tech-based programmes that are data-driven may appear to be the proper reply in a world the place everybody has an opinion on diet. However HealthifyMe Professional continues to be a piece in progress. That is one thing even the corporate admits since it’s only in beta testing for now.

However earlier than you resolve to enroll, please do learn up on blood sugar ranges, and diabetes or simply discuss to a health care provider who specialises within the area. You probably have anxiousness and end up panicking each time you see the numbers proper publish a meal, then I’d not advocate you do that. You’ll solely persuade your self of one thing that maybe doesn’t even exist. Even I gained’t be carrying the sensor once more, until my physician provides me the approval.

The rationale I say it’s greatest to seek the advice of your physician first is from expertise. My insulin resistance was caught as a result of I occurred to inform my gynaecologist that I wasn’t losing a few pounds regardless of swimming day by day. She prompt I get my sugars examined and sure, issues had been off. Name it genetics (my mom and paternal aunt have kind 2 diabetes), my lack of standard train, or my love for deep-fried maida in any type, I’ve recognized that I’m susceptible to diabetes. HealthifyMe Professional was simply one other reminder that I must work repeatedly to maintain these issues in test. However most significantly, it was a reminder that on days I don’t transfer, I’m inflicting much more harm to myself, maybe greater than that bowl of ice cream I now so judiciously keep away from.

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