Meals & glucose photo app — what do you think?

Hi everyone, my name is Masha, I work with a startup that is building a food logging app for people with diabetes. With my first post here I’d like to ask your opinion about the idea of the app, and to call for volunteers to test the pre-release version of the app on iPhone. Please :slightly_smiling_face:

So, here’s the idea: a food logging app that matches meal pictures with blood glucose readings, automatically imported from glucose meters via Apple Health. All you need to do is take pictures of what you eat. We think it’s the simplest way to keep track of your personal glucose response to the actual food you eat, and to see the bigger picture (like, why you have higher sugar today after the same breakfast you had yesterday — and if it has smth to do with your last night late dinner).

Please share your thoughts! If you want to try an early version on your iPhone, you can install it via Testflight (a developer testing app, also installed on your phone) using this link: TestFlight - Apple



Very interesting.

In addition to linking to Apple Health and pulling BG from meter uploads, would you be able to pull BG values from Dexcom?


Hi @Tim35, I believe there is no way for a 3rd party app to pull data from Dexcom directly? Our app has CGM mode, and we are hoping to get Dexcom readings via Apple Health too, from Dexcom Share — I know about 3 hour delay, yet it should work fine for the purpose of the app. We don’t have any Dexcom users on board yet to test it :slight_smile: So we’ll know more about it soon, I hope.

xDrip gets it directly from the Dexcom transmitter, so it is possible…


Dexcom has provided an API interface for developers. Perhaps you could make use of this from your application?

NOTE: We use Dexcom and run the Dexcom G6 Mobile app on an iPhone but we do NOT use Apple Health.

@Tim35 - Check out today’s podcast with Dexcom’s CEO

He specifically states the G6 will port directly to Apple Watch (iOS) later in 2019. No iphone needed.

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I will listen to that. Thanks. I am interested.
Dexcom had discussed this quite some time ago but I had heard nothing from them for such a long time that I was starting to wonder if they had put that project on the shelf and simply were not going to mention it. (It happens.) It is nice that the CEO has provided an actual timeframe.

This will be a cool update. I think many people are really waiting for this.

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Me as well! New iOS watch, a good reason to get one :+1:t3:
He mentioned Apple has been pushing for this and was instrumental in the update

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(I still did not listen yet)

But last time Dexcom was speaking about this, they were NOT going to require the newest Apple Watch that has the cell phone capabilities. The Dexcom direct to watch would work with the current watches at the time which I think was Watch 3? So unless Dexcom altered how they were going to do this, it would not require the watch that just came out.

I assumed new watch. He did state not until they revised iOS
As I said, later in '19

Thanks @Tim35, the team is now looking into the API requirements.

We chose Apple Health as the quickest way to start testing our concept with a list of different meters in different countries. And now we are seeking feedback to see what integrations we should aim first: bluetooth, device APIs, Tidepool, Nightscout, or anything else.

And btw why don’t you use Apple Health?

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I don’t use Apple Health either but I believe it as well as Dexcom Clarity have a 3 hour delay in uploading BGs to the cloud. Whereas xDrip+ and Nightscout upload BGs in real time, as they are received from the transmitter. A 3 hour delay seems unnecessary to me.

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@Trying I mean, ‘using’ Apple Health doesn’t require any effort or recurrent action, besides turning on the auto sync. So I wonder if there is any specific reason for not doing that? Or it’s simply you don’t need it?

What do you think about the app concept anyway? :slight_smile:

I use xdrip and nightscout which provide better and more timely features. Otherwise, I don’t see any reason not to use Apple Health. It just doesn’t provide the features I’m already getting!

I haven’t tried your app but if it can discern the various ingredients in a meal via a pic, I think it is a great and useful feature! Thank you for your efforts!

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I don’t see the need for Apple corporation to have access to our medical information.

(If I was to be real and blunt about it. lol)


Tim, ultimately it will all come down to the 5 Armies fighting for ownership and rule over you…

Microsoft, Facebook, Amazon, Apple, and Google


I am on the side of the Eagles.

Air Superiority.



@Tim35 That was my first guess =)

Anyway, I’m back for more feedback :slight_smile: Probably screen videos give not much to discuss, so I feel I should explain more on our hypotheses behind the app idea (criticism is very welcome):

  1. It’s easy to take a pic — so if you want/need to keep a food diary, it saves time and improves your consistency

  2. A pic represents more details about your meal and its context without having to write it down (‘chicken’ vs ‘that late night fried chicken with salad and fatty sauce’ — those details show up in your head when you look at the actual pic you’ve taken that night, instead of a generic pic from a food database).

  3. The visual timeline of your bg levels vs the food is the easies way to grasp the trends of how particular meals and meal times influenced your bg levels.

So please help me here:

  • Is food logging really a case for you?
  • Do you think about what you’ve eaten, when bg is out of range — or you focus more on the insulin dosage, not meal choices?
  • Is photo timeline with blood sugar tags something you would like to have in the app that you are using right now, not another app?
  • Or you wouldn’t use it at all, cause you hate taking photo of your food? :slight_smile:

that’s the primary issue for me.

Next up: I don’t do Apple. Never will in the future. Been down that road with 13 Apple products. One is still being used here (my wife’s Macbook Pro which I’ve regretted buying her). UGH!

IMO (don’t flog me for my OPINION), it’s just silly to be taking photos of food because I’m diabetic and want good control. Years ago, ON A LARK, I tried an app that was supposed to figure out nutrition info. Big bust and and I don’t care if the Apple app is way better than that one–I only tried the one I mentioned just for fun, for a short time. Not to incorporate it into my lifestyle. :slight_smile:

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While I’m willing to try most diabetes apps I don’t continue to use most of them because I haven’t yet tried 1 that had everything I needed in a way that wasn’t a nuisance to enter the info (btw apple health kicks me out of auto sync several times a day). I think you might not be looking at your target audience here since most of us on this forum are extremely conscious of what we’re eating and the effect that it has on our BG’s already.

Is the app doing the comparisons for you or do you need to look for the patterns yourself? I do think about what I ate when I go out of range but more often than not it’s a split second thought like ah yes that! then I either make a correction or wait for the insulin I already took to finish it’s job. If I’m having several days of out of whack BG’s I will log everything that I eat in order to see if I’ve accidentally jumped up or down in calorie consumption but most of the food I eat I know what it’s going to do barring something else going on.

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