Continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) has many benefits for people living with diabetes. However, most research about CGM has been done with White participants with type 1 diabetes. As a result, we have little knowledge or experience in using CGM in racial/ethnic minority populations with type 2 diabetes (T2D) not using insulin.
CGM shows abnormal blood sugar profiles
In a study at Sansum Diabetes Research Institute (SDRI), we looked at CGM profiles in mostly Mexican-American adults living with type 2 diabetes not using insulin or at risk of developing type 2 diabetes. We used standard CGM measures, such as average glucose (blood sugar), changes in glucose, and how much time a person’s glucose is in a healthy range. The CGM data show that blood sugar profiles become worse as people progress from being at-risk of T2D, to pre-T2D, and then to non-insulin treated T2D. Also, when we looked at CGM readings by time of day, we found that time in 70–140 mg/dL and 140–180 mg/dL ranges within one day can give us key information. For example, these measurements can show early signs of diabetes getting worse.
We need equitable access to technology for diabetes
Mexican-Americans already face a disproportionate impact from diabetes. The use of CGM in mostly Mexican-American adults provides important insights into blood sugar profiles for people at risk of and living with T2D. These results may lead to new ways to reduce the risk of developing T2D and to better understand the progression of diabetes for this population.
Photo by Mil Familias