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What meter?

Discussion in 'Blood Glucose Monitoring' started by scottyjohn, Aug 13, 2017.

  1. scottyjohn

    scottyjohn Type 2 · Member

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    Hi all,
    Call from doc on Wednesday to say I'm definitely type 2 and will need tablets to get it under control. Attending a diabetes clinic on Thursday to go over the details and get further tests done, however I'd like to get a meter and start testing so I have some info and details when I go to the clinic.
    I'm familiar with low carb diet principles as have lost weight previously doing the same.

    My question is, what should I be looking for in a meter?, cost doesn't matter, but just wanted some recommendations?

    Many thanks
  2. Goonergal

    Goonergal Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi @scottyjohn

    I'd look at the cost of the test strips rather than the meter as that is the biggest expense.

    There is a section on this website about meters - http://www.diabetes.co.uk/diabetes_care/blood_glucose_monitor_guide.html

    There are 2 meters with relatively cheap strips - the SD Codefree https://homehealth-uk.com/all-products/codefree-blood-glucose-monitoring-system-mmoll-or-mgdl/

    Or the Tee2 - http://spirit-healthcare.co.uk/product-category/shop/tee2/

    In either case you need to tick the box to say you have diabetes (to avoid VAT) and you need a meter measuring in mmol.

    There are a couple of discount codes for the SD Codefree strips - will try and dig them out. I use this meter and am very happy with it.
  3. helensaramay

    helensaramay Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Things for me to consider with a meter are
    - memory. Do you want it to store results or just tell you the latest results?
    - size. I always look for a small meter because I dislike carrying a large bag everywhere I go
    - amount of blood. My fingers don't always give blood easily so would like to keep this to a minimum
    - time for results. Many meters now give results in 5 seconds but some take 10 seconds and I'm impatient.
    - size of text. Depending whether you wear glasses, you may want the find a meter with larger text
    - strip packaging. Many come in little pots which mean you always have to carry a pot around with you. Others come in foil which means you can rip off a few and throw them in your pocket. But some people find the foil fiddly to open
    -ruggedness. If you are going t throw the meter around in a bag, a tough screen may not be ideal
    - ketones. Do you need to measure ketones? Some meter can do ketones as well as BG
    - calculation. Some meters can be programmed to tell you your insulin dose (if you take insulin) based on your carbs and current BG.
    - price of test strips. You say price is not important but if f you are testing 6 times a day (for example), the price can seriously add up.
  4. pollensa

    pollensa Prediabetes · Active Member

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    Hello Helen

    From Mallorca.

    I do not know if your like myself traumatized to take own finger tests! I have found the best meter testing you can ever imagine its called GENTEEL. Made in UK but sold in UK I believe and UK. Its wonderful, painless too.

    It takes tests by sucking device you have choices also. You can do a finger prick test if you prefer of like myself, you can take in on outer arm, inner arm, palm hand, just over the knee top of arm, this is often used method by mothers who have to test children during the night their sugar levels, when the genteel pen is pressed on the arm they children do not even wake up!

    That's how fabulous it is. No sore fingers anymore, no bruising, no pressing squeezing blood. It sucks sufficient blood in a few seconds and you just lift off the pen genteel device and use your normal tester and strip to get the results.

    Put in Genteel Lancing Device in Google and see this amazing sugar testing device. Its not cheap I paid 139 Euros here in Mallorca, but well worth every penny, why suffer sore fingers, pressing for blood when you can have painless testing.

    Its fantastic.

    Good luck.

  5. helensaramay

    helensaramay Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Very interesting @pollensa.
    Thankfully, I do not have a big problem with the props king (and when my fingers get too bruised, I take a bit of break with a CGM). However, that was not the reason I did not mention finger prickers in response to the original question. I chose not to mention the finger prickers when selecting a meter because they are interchangeable.
  6. scottyjohn

    scottyjohn Type 2 · Member

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    Thanks all, I suppose I need to do a lot more reading and perhaps wait to speak to the team at the diabetes clinic to double check what I should be monitoring, and what levels I actually have now?
  7. bulkbiker

    bulkbiker Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I would like to add a note of caution as to the diabetes clinic.
    Usually Type 2's are advised not to test, this is not for any particularly good reason, just that your GP will not want to prescribe a meter or the test strips. You may get one if you are really lucky and please do ask for one but don't be disappointed if you don't. Most of us self fund. Also depending on how up to date your HCP's are you may get good diet advice or appalling (in my opinion). It really does depend on where you are.
    A lot of us recommend a low carb ( in my case a very very low carb) way of eating to control blood sugars.
    Once you have your meter you can start to test how differing foods impact your blood sugar levels and you'll probably find that carbs are the worst. I'll tag @daisy1 for the beginners guide and you could do a lot worse than have a read of diet doctor on

    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 · Master

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    Just to add that it is essential to know all your blood test results, and not just glucose but all the others - cholesterol, lipids, liver & kidney functions, full blood count and any other thrown in. These all become important when you cross the threshold to diabetes and need to have a good eye kept on them. The easiest way to obtain these is to ask for a print out (each and every time you have tests). If you are in England your surgery may put test results on line. Most do, as requested by NHS England, but some don't. You would do well to ask what your surgery does and how to register for it.
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  9. daisy1

    daisy1 Type 2 · Guru
    Staff Member Retired Moderator

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    Hello ScottyJohn and welcome to the Forum :) Here is the Basic Information we give to new members and I hope you will find it useful. Ask as many questions as you like and someone will help.


    Diabetes is the general term to describe people who have blood that is sweeter than normal. A number of different types of diabetes exist.

    A diagnosis of diabetes tends to be a big shock for most of us. It’s far from the end of the world though and on this forum you'll find well over 250,000 people who are demonstrating this.

    On the forum we have found that with the number of new people being diagnosed with diabetes each day, sometimes the NHS is not being able to give all the advice it would perhaps like to deliver - particularly with regards to people with type 2 diabetes.

    The role of carbohydrate

    Carbohydrates are a factor in diabetes because they ultimately break down into sugar (glucose) within our blood. We then need enough insulin to either convert the blood sugar into energy for our body, or to store the blood sugar as body fat.

    If the amount of carbohydrate we take in is more than our body’s own (or injected) insulin can cope with, then our blood sugar will rise.

    The bad news

    Research indicates that raised blood sugar levels over a period of years can lead to organ damage, commonly referred to as diabetic complications.

    The good news

    People on the forum here have shown that there is plenty of opportunity to keep blood sugar levels from going too high. It’s a daily task but it’s within our reach and it’s well worth the effort.

    Controlling your carbs

    The info below is primarily aimed at people with type 2 diabetes, however, it may also be of benefit for other types of diabetes as well.

    There are two approaches to controlling your carbs:
    • Reduce your carbohydrate intake
    • Choose ‘better’ carbohydrates
    Reduce your carbohydrates

    A large number of people on this forum have chosen to reduce the amount of carbohydrates they eat as they have found this to be an effective way of improving (lowering) their blood sugar levels.

    The carbohydrates which tend to have the most pronounced effect on blood sugar levels tend to be starchy carbohydrates such as rice, pasta, bread, potatoes and similar root vegetables, flour based products (pastry, cakes, biscuits, battered food etc) and certain fruits.

    Choosing better carbohydrates

    The low glycaemic index diet is often favoured by healthcare professionals but some people with diabetes find that low GI does not help their blood sugar enough and may wish to cut out these foods altogether.

    Read more on carbohydrates and diabetes.

    Over 145,000 people have taken part in the Low Carb Program - a free 10 week structured education course that is helping people lose weight and reduce medication dependency by explaining the science behind carbs, insulin and GI.

    Eating what works for you

    Different people respond differently to different types of food. What works for one person may not work so well for another. The best way to see which foods are working for you is to test your blood sugar with a glucose meter.

    To be able to see what effect a particular type of food or meal has on your blood sugar is to do a test before the meal and then test after the meal. A test 2 hours after the meal gives a good idea of how your body has reacted to the meal.

    The blood sugar ranges recommended by NICE are as follows:

    Blood glucose ranges for type 2 diabetes
    • Before meals: 4 to 7 mmol/l
    • 2 hours after meals: under 8.5 mmol/l
    Blood glucose ranges for type 1 diabetes (adults)
    • Before meals: 4 to 7 mmol/l
    • 2 hours after meals: under 9 mmol/l
    Blood glucose ranges for type 1 diabetes (children)
    • Before meals: 4 to 8 mmol/l
    • 2 hours after meals: under 10 mmol/l
    However, those that are able to, may wish to keep blood sugar levels below the NICE after meal targets.

    Access to blood glucose test strips

    The NICE guidelines suggest that people newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes should be offered:

    • structured education to every person and/or their carer at and around the time of diagnosis, with annual reinforcement and review
    • self-monitoring of plasma glucose to a person newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes only as an integral part of his or her self-management education

    Therefore both structured education and self-monitoring of blood glucose should be offered to people with type 2 diabetes. Read more on getting access to blood glucose testing supplies.

    You may also be interested to read questions to ask at a diabetic clinic.

    Note: This post has been edited from Sue/Ken's post to include up to date information.

    Take part in Diabetes.co.uk digital education programs and improve your understanding. They're all free.
    • Low Carb Program - it's made front-page news of the New Scientist and The Times. Developed with 20,000 people with type 2 diabetes; 96% of people who take part recommend it... find out why
    • Hypo Program - improve your understanding of hypos. There's a version for people with diabetes, parents/guardians of children with type 1, children with type 1 diabetes, teachers and HCPs.
  10. Art Of Flowers

    Art Of Flowers Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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