Question about the True Track meter

Hello everyone,

I don't know if I am officially diabetic but appear to be headed in that direction. I am here because I have had some high glucose readings and I'm a proactive kind of a gal.

I never had high glucose readings til I went on an ultra low carb diet for 5 months. I went in for a routine test and my fasting glucose was 96, causing my doctor to be alarmed. I did some research and found that ultra low carb makes some people insulin resistant. So here I am. I went out and bought the True Track meter and have been testing myself and getting some alarming numbers, as high as 162 an hour after eating and not really going down too fast. Sometimes it will actually be higher at the 2-hour mark than the one-hour mark, but knock wood, 162 is the highest it's been so far.

Regarding the True Track meter, my first question is it normal to get a huge variance i.e. testing 3 times in quick succession and get 161/142/162? And in that case would you take the average of the three readings?

The second question is about the control solution that you use to see if the meter is working. You use this liquid they give you with the test strips and it's supposed to come out to between 86-116. So when you do this test with the control solution, are you supposed to factor in how far away from the middle of the range the control solution is coming out when you look at your own readings? For example when I first bought the meter the test solution was coming out at 103 which is pretty much in the middle of the range. Then a few weeks later it was 88, then it was 114. So i.e. if the test solution is coming out at the low end of the range does that mean that my glucose readings will be measuring artificially low on the meter and that they are actually much higher? I hope I'm explaining myself clearly.

So the first thing I have to say is that a fasting reading of 96 isn't high. The range for pre-diabetic starts at fasting readings over 100, so I wouldn't worry about one "borderline" pre-diabetic reading.

Now the 162 concerns me...if you're eating fairly low-carb at those meals. Granted, it isn't high, exactly, but it isn't quite normal, either.

Yes, it's extremely common to get readings not too close to each-other in quick succession. In fact, meter variation can be as high as +/- 20%, which isn't very tight at all. Some of the newer meters (Accu-Chek Nano, One Touch Verio IQ) have ranges of +/- 15%, which is also not too tight, but isn't half bad, either.

I never took the control solution thing into consideration--I just considered it to be within normal variation. If the same drop of blood can give variation within the same vial, then so can the control solution.

As for a reading like 161/142/162, I'd drop the one that's very out of range (the 142) and then average the other two. If they're all really far apart, I take the middle reading.

I wish you a lot of luck. And you've come to the right place--this is a wonderful place to ask questions.

The wide error range (+/-20%) is chiefly due to imprecision in the manufacturing process, causing variation strip to strip in the same lot. As such, where a control test falls in the control range is meaningless. There will be variation across multiple ontrol tests from the same lot, even though the sugar level is exactly the same!

Guitarnut gives the most statistically valid approach to averaging, but you really need minimum 4 samples. Toss out the high and low, average the rest.

Or,do like us experts (diabetics :-)) do... just take one reading, and go with it. That's plenty good enough.

As for diabetes, 96 is nothing to worry about. The 160+ is. especially two hours after eating. I'd check 3 hours postprandial for a series of "normal" meals (at least 40-50 carbs). If you're back under 100, you're fine.

If still over 120, this non-doctor diabetic says you have diabetes.

If you’ve only had one test at 160+ it also could have been a fluke, food residue on your hands can do that easily… If you’ve had dozens e of normal tests and only one at 160+, ad after eating… It might just be a fluke. There are tests doctors can do, such as the oral glucose tolerance test, that can answer the question definitively if your body is struggling with glucose or not

I agree with the 3 hour test.

I used to be in the 70's before 2 hours was up. Now after 3 I'm closer to 120-130. I never thought about that before...

Good advice, I'd only say that a formal GTT isn't necessary to find out if one has a glucose tolerance problem.

Can be done on the cheap with a bag of skittles and a glucose meter.

What most people miss in this scenario is the very high levels of insulin your pancreas is pumping out.

Plenty of people are, in my view, full-on diabetic well before they are having BG control problems. They go for many years in a state of hyperinsulinemia while still being able to yield normal BG metabolism. They already have insulin resistance, it just hasn't got bad enough yet, or the pancreas hasn't been exhausted yet (or some combination of the two).

In my crazy, non-MD opinion, diabetes should be diagnosed with glucose challenge and then tracking insulin levels in response, not the success of the endocrine system in keeping BG under control. An acceptable, non-risk range for insulin response to carbs (essentially an I:C ratio, simplified), and if you're outside that, you need to start treating the situation.

People with this diagnosis should be given a range of treatment options, up to and including insulin therapy from the get-go if they want it.

Type 2 diabetes care is based on managing and coping with the damage, rather then the disease. We don't follow a protocol to catch this thing at its earliest, when it might be possible to truly prevent it. I mean TRULY.

Anyone with a family history of T2 should be tested regularly (annually, maybe every 2 years, something like that) for insulin resistance, and insulin production. Then maybe some pancreases could be saved.

Yes but the difference is in evaluating the results based on established criteria and If there is an issue, recording of it and llikely a referral to a specialist to help sort it out. Whereas a bag of skittles will likely only lead you to more questions, less certainty, and no direction

Well I conducted my own little experiment. I'm not much of a sweets gal, I'm more of a bread person, so that's what I used. I had 5 Pillsbury Grands buttermilk biscuits with 2 tablespoons of grass-fed butter. The macro count for this delicious snack is
Carb 130 gram
Fat 52 gram
Protein 15 gram

I would say it took about 15 minutes to eat all 5 biscuits. Prior to the meal, my reading was 75. One hour after I began eating, it jumped to 116 which doesn't seem that high, but one hour later (now 2 hours post-prandial) I got a reading of 134 and then immediately after a 146. So I don't understand why my 2 hour reading is higher than my one-hour or what any of this could mean.

Well that’s a massive carb dose for anyone, diabetic or not… And a glucose reading at the upper end of the normal post-meal range two hours later. So based on that, this non-experts advice is that you are probably ok. To put things in perspective, I’m relatively certain eating that without insulin would put my levels off the charts, we’re talking over 1000 and in the ICU on an IV insulin drip. I’d recommend if you have concerns about your glucose levels going forward though to watch carefully what you eat, particularly in terms of carbohydrates… My endocrinologist advises that nobody, diabetic or not, should eat more than 60 grams of carbohydrate with each meal routinely-- although the low carb thing is a subject often debated.

By the conventional wisdom, an oral glucose tolerance test as would be done by a doctor involves drinking 75g of carbohydrates in a sugary drink, and then monitoring glucose levels for the next 2 hours… If glucose levels rise above 200 at any point during that time it is considered “consistent with diabetes”. At least that’s my understanding

That's good to know, I was kind of wondering what the limit is.