On this episode of Anti-Aging Hacks, we talk about tracking blood glucose and why it’s important to see your individual glucose response to meals, stress, exercise and even during sleep. We discuss how to use a continuous glucose monitor to beat disease and live a healthier life.
Carlee Hayes is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and the Lead Dietitian at NutriSense, a company that leverages continuous glucose monitoring technology and data to prevent disease and improve healthspan. With an extensive background in nutrition counseling, weight management, and metabolic health, Carlee is on a mission to stop preventable diseases and help people live their healthiest lives.
Carlee Hayes Background
- Passion for cooking food
- Started in an outpatient counseling facility
- Had a lot of patients with diabetes and pre-diabetes
- Realized that nutrition interventions could be made to improve health outcome
What Is A Continuous Glucose Monitor (CGM) And Can You Use A CGM To Beat Disease
- Traditional devices use a finger prick device to tell you glucose at a certain time of day
- But it’s only one metric in time
- CGM tracks glucose 24 hours a day on an app. Scans blood glucose every 15 minutes.
- Tracks your metabolism – how your body uses the energy from the foods that you eat
- It’s a great way to get real time data to understand your individual response to food
What’s The Nutrisense CGM?
- At the moment, CGM is available through prescription only
- It monitors your glucose response to stress, sleep and food
- When you go with Nutrisense, you get a complimentary dietitian for a month to work with you and make changes to optimize your glucose levels
- The dietitian can help you with 1-1 recommendations suited to you
- You can design experiments and your dietitian can advise you
So What Happens When You Eat A Lot Of Carbs?
- Fruits, dairy, starchy veggies have the biggest impact on glucose
- When you eat carbs, your body produces glucose in the blood stream
- Your muscles take in a lot of glucose and the liver takes up some, and the rest gets stored as fat
- 80-90% of the glucose gets stored as glycogen in muscles and liver
- When your metabolism is dysfunctioning – eating the same carbs causes less glucose to be absorbed by muscle
- This is because your body does not respond to the same amount of insulin
- This causes your body to increase insulin production to try to shove the glucose into your cells
- This leads to insulin resistance, inflammation, oxidative damage and much more
- This process happens over a long time
- Continuous glucose monitors is one way to catch this early
- You can use a CGM to beat disease and live healthier for longer
What Is The Role Of Muscle In Blood Glucose
- Ideally – you want to reduce the amount of insulin you need to handle glucose
- In other words, you want to improve insulin sensitivity
- Having more muscle is a sink or sponge for glucose in the blood
- More muscle mass improves insulin sensitivity
- Men generally have a lot more muscle mass and therefore a better carbohydrate tolerance
- This is a good reason to add resistance training and improve muscle in your body
Why Is Glycemic Variability Important?
- Glycemic variability measures the swings in blood glucose in response to meals
- For example, after a meal your glucose could go from 80 to 140 or from 120 to 140. Those are two different swings
- You want the swings to be smaller – this shows that your body is able to process carbs well
- If the swings are high, then the body can overcorrect and even go low on blood glucose which can cause energy crashes
- Processed foods such as sugars, added sugars, processed granolas, instant oatmeals cause big swings – best to avoid these
- The larger swings cause advanced end glycation products (AGE’s) which can damage proteins in your body and cause faster aging
- This can allow you to use the CGM to beat disease and dysfunction before it starts
How Often Do People Go Hypoglycemic?
- Carlee sees hypoglycemia quite a bit (<70 blood glucose)
- Some people can be in the 60’s in response to a carnivore or keto diet – and that’s not a problem
- But if you wake up in the middle of the night and have low sugar symptoms – that’s a problem
- Women that have thyroid issues and some people that drink at night can experience low glucose symptoms
- Sometimes when people fast, this can cause hypoglycemia.
- It’s important to stay vigilant and take steps to reduce hypoglycemia
What Should Fasting Glucose Numbers Be?
- Fasting glucose is an overnight measure – after at least 8 hours of fasting
- You want this range to be in 70-90 range
- Fasting glucose higher than 90 is an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease
- When you sleep, there are a lot of hormones being released in your body so this affects glucose numbers during sleep
- While asleep, your average should be 100-105
- If you’re stressed, your body releases more glucose
- Meal-timing: dinner meal composition and timing can also have an effect on meals
- The later you eat at night, the worse your response is to that meal
- We’ve talked about the importance of periodic fasting on this show. Check out this resource to learn how fasting can be beneficial to improve your glucose response to food.
What Is Circadian Eating
- If there are no hormonal issues, then you can eat with the sun
- This means eating dinner before the sun sets
- This sets you up for an ideal circadian rhythm
What Is The Nutrisense Dashboard?
- Nutrisense dashboard collects all your glucose information in one nifty screen
- You start to learn trends in your body
- The dashboard helps to identify behavior and stay in the ideal zone
- The app has meal scores
- The app also shows the recovery score – which helps to improve insulin sensitivity
- Provides real time data
- The app connects with the Oura ring to pull in your sleep numbers
How Long Should You Put On A CGM?
- If you are healthy and experimenting, then a one month window will be enough
- A big weight loss goal or training for a marathon will take more time – maybe 3-6 months or even more
- Go to Nutrisense and enter the code ANTIAGINGHACKS for $25 off, and learn how to use this CGM to beat disease and metabolic problems.