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My Results From Continuous Glucose Monitoring for 30 Days
7 Min Read | I was shocked by my results! Get the details on what I learned by using a continuous glucose monitor and if I recommend it for you.
Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) seems to be trending right now. While traditionally, I shy away from the fads of the moment. I had my eye on this one. Rather than another shot in the dark, continuous glucose monitoring offered tangible results in real time. Unlike the scale, CGM opened up the internal workings of my biology to understand how it responded to what I did.
Health is not what you do. It’s how your body responds to what you do.
Having real-life data helped me understand the following:
How my body reacted to the food I consumed
How stress impacted my glucose levels
The impact of sleep or a lack of sleep
The power of movement
The effect of different macronutrients
How the time of day shifts my blood sugar response
Continuous monitoring allowed me to know at all times what was happening. Not a once-a-day snapshot we’ve traditionally fallen back on. Later this summer, I’m inviting my husband back on the podcast (who learned he had some underlying health problems we weren’t aware of) to talk about what changes we made and how they influenced our results and health.
For now, I wanted to share a few powerful things I learned, problems I experienced with CGM, and if I would recommend you try it.
**I will only speak for myself. My husband will share his shocking results later this summer on the podcast. Stay tuned!**
5 Things I Learned From My Results:
01: Meal Time Made All the Difference
The same meal I had in the morning with no spike in blood sugar caused a drastic spike later in the day. Meal timing made all of the difference in my body. I was much more receptive to higher sugar foods earlier in the day than the post 2:00 pm hour.
I even experimented with foods like pizza, donuts, and french fries. Although, I still don’t recommend these in your everyday life (the healthy 90%). I know it’s not practical (or healthy) to restrict. But this data showed me I have a healthier response to having the unhealthy 10% earlier in the day.
02: Meal Pairings Matter
Equally as important as meal timing is meal structure. No matter what time of the day it was, a spike occurred if I had a simple carbohydrate like a slice of pizza without protein or produce. The same was true of foods like fruit or french fries. Without protein and fat to slow down the sugar absorption, my blood sugar always spiked.
I love pizza and ran a little experiment. For lunch, I had three slices of sausage and mushroom pizza with a salad and mixed raw veggies with ranch. I followed that with a short walk within the hour.
As you can see, not a lot changed. Later that evening, I warmed up and ate three more slices of the same pizza with no vegetables. This meal caused three consecutive spikes that took my body almost three hours to regulate.
Produce and protein make all of the difference in slowing down the blood sugar response and helping the body to maintain an even and healthy flow.
03: Snacking is Killer
Logically, I've never been a fan of grazing. But in my human nature, grazing is such a comfortable and unconscious trait that no matter how often I remind myself snacking isn't healthy. I still did it. I grazed and snacked, picking at food without understanding how much or what I was consuming.
But the CGM allowed me to see what was happening inside my body in real-time. It completely turned me off from needing or even wanting the handful of potato chips or the bite of candy.
When I saw what sugar was doing and how it affected my internal body, I created an aversion to many habits, like the squirt of lemonade in my iced tea, the pre-meal meal, and finishing the cookie my daughter didn't eat.
Instead, I prioritized meals. Even if it was a snack, I prioritized protein and produce to ensure I was eating something nourishing and filling without the massive spike. In the process, I felt more filled, experienced fewer cravings, and felt more nourished. I felt like I was eating more even though I was eating less.
04: I Didn’t Have To Eat To Spike (Thanks To Stress)
I played around with a lot of different food patterns and pairings. One thing I didn't expect to the degree to which it happened was the spike stress caused. As I discussed in this post, your safety makes all of the difference to your health and how your body responds to life.
Seeing the spike in blood sugar in the absence of food made me recognize how influential my life, relationships, and emotional regulation are in the health of my internal workings. I knew this, but seeing it brought a completely different understanding.
It also explains why people can do the "right" things and not experience change. Because it's not just about perfecting your diet and exercise routine, it's your view of life, relationships, and perspective that create your health.
This image shows the powerful jump that happened during and after an intense argument with my husband. This proves how powerful the tier-one hormones are and how these spikes shift the flow and regulation of all other hormones that make up the hormonal hierarchy.
05: I Lost So Much Stubborn Inflammation + Feel Lighter and Healthier
I was shocked at how much better I felt in just 30 days. I was even more shocked I experienced the results I did when I used the first 14 days as experimentation. I can't tell you if I lost weight (I don't own a scale), although I feel like I got lighter. But I can tell you I noticed a difference in how I looked based on getting rid of excess inflammation floating around in my body.
I always knew blood sugar spikes cause a rise in inflammation. It is a stress response, and inflammation accompanies stress like a security detail. As long as stress is present, inflammation is always lingering in the background. But when I saw the shift by learning to level my blood sugar, I realized how much excess inflammation was due to stupid little habits like snacking.
I feel so much better, and I have a newfound respect for my body's work in the unconscious internal places to keep me functioning at my best.
Plus, there’s nothing quite like data in real time!
Problems I Experienced With CGM
The unforeseen problem I experienced with CGM was a self-created obsession with tracking my blood sugar. In all fairness, this was partially because I was fascinated by the results. But in all honesty, an unhealthy part of me came out. It felt like I was being controlled or getting back to the place of micromanagement.
However, once I became aware of it and even vocalized my obsession with my husband, that part of me holding me hostage lost its power, and I started to find some balance. I could look at my results to understand and make necessary changes while not obsessing or beating myself up even though I wasn't scoring where I would have thought or liked even though I eat healthy.
But here's the thing I know and repeat over and over. It's not just about what I do. It's my stress load. It's the emotional baggage I refuse to let go of. It's the wall I like to put up between my husband and me. These things matter, arguably more than what I eat. These things are worth working on and can significantly change my blood glucose levels.
Would I recommend it?
Would I recommend CGM? Absolutely. But I also firmly believe health shouldn't have to cost a thing. You don't need something like this to get healthy. Just like you don't need to biohack your health with thousand-dollar treatments or purchase expensive equipment to make health work for you.
You have what you need to live healthy.
Of course, tools can be beneficial, but they can also be expensive. And continuous glucose monitoring is one of those slightly more expensive tools. Although one month is the price of two doctor's appointments, so call it what you will.
But I 100% recommend this for everyone if you have some extra cash to spend on your health. One, because your results are personal to you. While I gave you generalization, you'll find what you react to or don't will be unique to you. Plus, the data creates a better understanding of a healthy eating window, how your sleep cycles impact your health, and what exercise is helping or hurting you.
I would recommend at least one month. However, I think two or three months would be ideal, considering you might spend half of the first month understanding how your body reacts to your current life before you make the changes to regulate that response.
After you put the changes to work, you can re-evaluate with another month and see if you have better results.
I used Levels and loved every aspect of it. While it's still in beta testing, the app, the setup, and the customer support were spot on! If you try it out, I'll give you two free e-mail consults during your 30 days to help create change. Use this link to get Levels to get two free months of membership, then send me a message to let me know you signed up, and let’s start understanding this critical and informative health metric.
Can You Guess What Meal Caused The Biggest Spike:
Can you guess what meal I ate that spiked my blood sugar the highest? I almost topped out at 200, which would be horrible!
Leave a comment below, and the first one to guess it wins a year-long membership in this community!