How Technology can Benefit Those with Diabetes

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Managing diabetes, either type 1 or type 2, is a full-time job.  However, over time, there have been some technological advancements that have helped the diabetes community manage their condition, and even possibly save them money in turn.

In the United States alone, almost 9 percent of the population has a form of diabetes or prediabetes.  With so many people affected by this chronic illness, it’s no wonder that technology companies are looking ways, to help up to this growing population.  In this article, we’ll examine some new types of technology, that are helping the diabetes community with their condition.

Weight Loss Applications

For many people, especially for the type 2 diabetes community, weight loss is a major concern.  “Carrying excess body fat increases the body’s resistance to insulin, making blood glucose management more challenging,” says Sue McLaughlin, RD, CDE, past 2009 national president of health care and education for the American Diabetes Association. ”

For some people who have type 2 diabetes, they may be able to control their condition without the use of medication, by watching their weight and engaging in an exercise program.  One popular method to help you stay on target is by using applications.

Popular applications include MyFitnessPal, Lose It, and Pact.  All these applications allow you to track calories, and help you stay on track with your dietary goals and guidelines.  Many doctors are encouraging their diabetic clients to look into these types of applications, as they help most stay people stay focused, and accountable for their eating decisions.  In turn, this helps people with their weight and a1c levels.  A win-win for the individual.

Fitness Applications

If you’ve ever been diagnosed with Diabetes, one of the first things a doctor or endocrinologist will recommend is to begin exercising.  Gone are the days of having to log your workouts in a notebook and share them with your medical professional.  Applications can do all this for you.

Popular fitness watches such as Fitbit can help you monitor your daily activity.  This includes how many steps you take, to tracking your time running on a treadmill or outside.  Studies have sown that people who use fitness related technology tend to be more motivated, in keeping up with their overall health, and control of diabetes.

Life insurance companies have also taken notice of applicants who use fitness related technology.  Life insurance with type 2 diabetes can be obtained at a discounted rate, if you use and share the results of your activity to the life insurance company.  These discounted rates can save you thousands of dollars over the lifetime of the policy.  Companies will even consider no medical exam life insurance options for type 2 diabetics if the applicant is willing to share their daily activity with the insurer.

Continuous Glucose Monitoring Devices

A continuous glucose monitoring device is a form of diabetes technology, that allows a person with diabetes to track their glucose levels throughout the day.  The CGM helps the user manage their highs and lows and gives them insight into how their body responds to the food they eat, and how the body responds to exercise.

This technology gives a diabetic an idea of where their glucose levels are at, and in turn, helps a person manage their diabetes.  Studies have shown that people who use a CGM device tend to have better controlled A1C levels, and fewer complications compare to a person who does not use this technology.

Several companies offer this inexpensive technology such as Dexcom, One Drop, and Medtronic.  These devices will provide regular updates, every 5 minutes, as to where your glucose levels are.  Most insurance companies will pay for these devices, as they know they will help with the control of your diabetes and help prevent complications from this disease.