💬 Friday discussion: wantable wearables
I have a new favourite wearable: the CGM, or continuous glucose monitor.
The chart above shows my body fat percentage from May last year to yesterday morning. The precipitous decline that starts at the end of April was when I started to wear a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) provided to me by EV reader Dan Zavorotny, one of the founders of Nutrisense. (The CGM was the Abbott Libre Freestyle 2, also available from Amazon and used by several other EV members. I’ve picked up several since.)
A CGM gives a reading of a crucial biomarker, the amount of glucose in our bloodstream. (CGM's actually measure interstitial fluid rather than blood glucose directly, so some maths translates one to another.) Glucose levels are super important because glucose is regulated by insulin, amongst other things, and our insulin response has enormous implications on our health. (#notadoctor).
The CGM is helping me understand my insulin response and improve both my training and eating. The result has been training gains and much better body composition. (I call it the Molly effect. Not that molly. Molly was the nutritionist who helped me understand my glucose spikes against my eating and training.)
It was a wow moment. I already wear an Apple Watch (for heart rate and distance) and a Whoop (for recovery and strain), but the CGM unlocked something new for me. See the graph above.
As I wrote in last week’s EV, Apple is teaming up with Rockley Photonics to develop a watch that will read insulin, glucose, blood pressure and several other biomarkers. Aktiia offers a stylish blood pressure bangle.
I’m curious to learn about other members’ experiences with wearables. What are your favourites and why?
What startups or researchers do you know of working on breakthrough health wearables?
I’m also curious to explore how we think about these technologies. Should they be widely available, through a mass-consumer path, like the Apple Watch? Or are there good reasons for them to go through a medical/healthcare channel, treated as therapeutic or diagnostic devices, regulated, prescribed and managed by healthcare professionals?
Looking forward to a fruitful chat,
P.S. For more reading on insulin, glucose and CGMs, I suggest: