If you’ve been paying attention to the wellness and weight loss industries, then you might have heard the buzz around using a CGM for weight loss. A CGM, or continuous glucose monitor, is a small wearable device that syncs with an app on your phone and measures your glucose levels throughout the day.
Your blood glucose levels can give you a very insightful snapshot of your overall health in relation to food, exercise, stress, and sleep. Understanding your blood glucose and how these factors affect them can give you the keys to optimizing your nutrition, weight loss, and lifestyle.
I recently tried both Signos CGM and Nutrisense CGM, two very similar programs in concept, but with their own features and nuances. In this article, I am excited to share with you my experience of both as well as my recommendations for how to choose which CGM for weight loss is right for you.
Can a CGM Help You Lose Weight? How?
In order to answer this question, we have to first have an understanding of how insulin (glucose) controls our metabolism. Insulin is the driver of the car, so to speak, when it comes to our metabolism. It’s what’s referred to as an “anabolic” hormone, which means that it contributes to our bodies’ growth.
Here’s how it works:
- Eating prompts our pancreas to release insulin into our bloodstream
- Insulin then start directing our body with what to do, telling our body to burn glucose
- It can shift our metabolism from burning fat to storing fat
For a healthy individual with a healthy metabolism who eats a nutrient-dense diet, their insulin releases likely work perfectly, metabolizing the sugar and storing minimal amounts of fat. However, those with abnormal metabolisms and poor diets will cause our bodies to release too much insulin, too often. This creates a situation where your body stores more insulin as body fat, making losing weight difficult.
This is where tracking and understanding your blood glucose levels become so valuable. By seeing the spikes in relation to your lifestyle choices in real-time, you’re able to make small, sustainable changes to your diet and lifestyle habits that will result in fewer insulin spikes, and ultimately, weight loss.
Understanding Your Blood Glucose Levels In Relation to Weight Loss
Every individual has a baseline glucose level and it’s the bedrock from where you will build your healthy diet. Both Signos and Nutrisense have tools in place to help you determine your baseline. With a baseline firmly established, you can then hone in on how the foods you eat are affecting your blood sugar. With this data, we can then maximize our metabolism and facilitate weight loss.
As a general rule, we don’t want to see our blood sugar spike more than 30 points after eating a meal, particularly, if our goal is to lose weight. With this in mind, we can monitor our baseline glucose levels and see how they respond post-meal. If you’re seeing huge spikes in your glucose, this is an indication that your eating habits are causing unhealthy spikes and that your diet could use some fine-tuning to ensure that your post-meal spike stays in a healthier range.
Next, let’s take a closer look at both Nutrisense and Signos and how these CGMs can help us to gather the data we need to understand our blood glucose levels as well as provide us with the tools we need to make them more manageable and conducive to weight loss.
Studies On CGMs and Weight Loss
Of course, we always like to back up any claims with some research and a study or two for proof. This study found that 87% of CGM users modified their food choices based on the data they collected from the glucose levels via their CGM. Furthermore, 47% of CGM users were more likely to go for a walk post-meal when they saw a rise in their blood sugar (walking or another physical activity can help moderate your levels). But, best of all, 90% of the study participants felt as though they were on a path to a healthier lifestyle thanks to the CGM.
Another study found that glucose spikes and dips can be controlled by your eating patterns i.e. eating again soon or eating more calories at a meal and throughout the rest of the day. Some people discover that they are snacking too much, never allowing their glucose to get back to baseline in between meals, leaving them with elevated levels throughout the day. With a CGM in place, you can use your glucose levels as a tool for something referred to as “appetite training” or the recognition of hunger signals.
Table Comparison Of Signos Vs. NutriSense
Real time tracking
Easy access to app
Personalized Nutrition Plan
Access to registered dietitian through app
Alerts for High/Low Glucose Levels
$99-$299 per month
For 15% off, use code FHM15
Starting at $175 per month
For 15% off, use code FHM15
Signos takes an individualized approach to weight loss, understanding that we are all unique and so are the foods and habits that spike our individual glucose levels. With Signos, you can get real-time data collected from your CGM from every meal and snack that you eat.
The Signos team believes that healthy looks like:
- The ability to see how your body responds to the food you eat.
- Learning and understanding what spike your glucose (everyone is different!).
- Use the information you receive to make small, sustainable changes that help you to avoid spikes and lose weight.
Signos partners with Dexcom CGM to provide you with some of the most up-to-date technology available in the space. Dexcom works seamlessly with the app, so there’s no need to scan or take any extra steps in order to get your updated glucose reading. Plus, you can set up alerts on your CGM to let you know when your glucose level is either spiking too high or too low, which can really come in handy and eliminate the need for you to be constantly checking the app.
Standout Features and Benefits
Signos provides elite features that you can benefit from if you're wanting to lose weight through tracking your blood glucose through a CGM system.
Custom weight loss plan
Signos uses data gathered directly from your body to develop a weight loss plan that’s unique to you and your lifestyle
Eliminating the guesswork
Weight loss often feels like a confusing and frustrating puzzle, but Signos takes care of that for you by eliminating the need to guess when it comes to weight loss. As a Signos user, all you need to do is wear your CGM and follow along with the prompts and activities inside the app.
Wellness road mapping
Once you’ve completed a series of exercises and tests, Signos then has the data it needs to help you create a roadmap to wellness and weight loss success. The plan curated for you will include small, sustainable lifestyle changes that will lead to incredible results. Your plan is custom to you and flexible enough to make sure you stay on course.
Personalized exercise prompts
The AI inside the app will get to know how your glucose responds to the exercise that you log. When your glucose spikes, the AI will then let you know how long and how hard you will need to work to bring it back down again.
Predicted glucose response
Thanks to the powerful AI, you can log the meal or food that you plan to eat and the app will predict your glucose response.
How to Get Started
- Step 1: Choose your plan and submit answers to a short health quiz.
- Step 2: Receive your kit in the mail and apply your sensor.
- Step 3: Download the Signos app and get to tracking!
- Very simple to use, even for someone brand new to using a CGM
- Application with the Dexcom tracker is so easy and pain-free
Signos costs between $99-$299 per month, depending on the subscription plan that you choose. A Signos subscription includes the Signos kit shipped to your doorstep, access to the comprehensive weight loss plan via the Signos App, the cost of the devices, and medical consultation for physician approval of the CGM.
Included in the Signos kit:
- Performance covers
- Alcohol wipes
- Glucose drink
- Welcome book with step-by-step instructions
For 15% off, use code FHM15
Nutrisense is helping everyday people optimize their daily health performance by using a CGM, experimenting with eating windows, workouts, and macronutrient balance. By arming you with the tools you need to truly understand how your body works, you can implement changes that work for your body and lifestyle.
At Nutrisense, they believe firmly that blood glucose is a vital sign that’s well worth measuring and understanding. With this CGM system, you get a program that’s built specifically for you, by you, and in conjunction with your registered dietitian, which is offered to you for free for the first month of using Nutrisense. Ideally, the Nutrisense team would like to see users wear their CGM and monitor their progress for an entire year for the best results.
Standout Features and Benefits
NutriSense also has similar features, like Signos, that provide realistic benefits, let's check those out below.
Real-time tracking and data
Your CGM and the Nutrisense App sync together seamlessly to offer real-time feedback and data about your blood glucose levels. This allows you to visualize and analyze the information and make personalized adjustments based on your body’s reaction to diet, exercise, sleep, stress, and more.
Meal tracking with Nutrisense allows you to see what foods are causing energy crashes, blood sugar spikes, and food cravings. After logging your meals, you will get a food feedback score that helps to keep you accountable for your body’s needs. No more one-size-fits-all diets.
Access to Registered Dietitians
All Nutrisense members will be assigned a registered dietitian (RD) that will work with them one-on-one inside the app for additional support. Your RD will help you to understand and interpret the numbers and data you get from your CGM and then make suggestions custom to you based on your health goals. You can chat with your RD any time inside the app!
Track your exercise and activity levels and begin to connect that with your blood glucose response. You will learn why timing your exercise after meals is important for your body and how the workouts you choose could be negatively impacting your glucose levels.
Nutrisense has a habit tracking feature that allows you to hold yourself accountable for changing your habits. You can track your habits inside the app and see the impact they are having on your body.
Sleep and stress tracking
Sleep and stress are two of the most underrated issues that can affect your weight and overall health. Nutrisense includes both stress and sleep tracking features that allow you to make sure you’re optimizing both.
Part of the optimization process involves experimenting with new things so that you can get to know what works best for you. With Nutrisense, you will receive recommended experiments and, if you choose to try them, you can track them inside the app to see how your body responds.
Getting Started With Nutrisense
- Step 1: Fill out a brief questionnaire and a Nutrisense doctor will review it for approval.
- Step 2: Once approved, you will receive your kit in the mail.
- Step 3: Follow the instructions to place your sensor and download the app.
- Step 4: Start tracking and wait for your RD to reach out with more information and the next steps.
- The app is a little confusing to read (data-wise)
- The applicator isn’t as smooth and user-friendly as other CGMs
- There’s no system for high or low glucose alerts, you need to open the app to check
Nutrisense has several package options starting at $175 per month. Currently, Nutrisense offers the subscription plan options:
- 3-month plan
- 6-month plan
- 12-month plan
Each subscription plan includes the following:
- 2 CGM sensors per month, each good for up to 14 days
- 1 month of complimentary in-app communication with your RD
- In-app food tracking to identify which foods are right for you
- Personal data visualization and analytics
- A comprehensive report on your blood sugar results and areas for improvement
Which Is Better For Weight Loss: Signos or Nutrisense?
To be honest, I find that both Nutrisense and Signos offer weight loss potential thanks to the app features and tracking capabilities. However, Signos is a little easier to use and understand than Nutrisense. However, Nutrisense offers complimentary access to an RD for the first month, which provides users with the opportunity to get clarity and gain an understanding of their data. But, keep in mind that once the free month is up, you will need to pay an additional $50 per month to maintain access to your RD.
Wrapping Up: Deciding Between Signos and Nutrisense Comes Down To…
Choosing a CGM for weight loss between Signos and Nutrisense comes down to what you value more: having limited access to a professional who will help you interpret the data or having access to an app that is easy to understand but also lets you access a professional should you need additional help.
Using Signos, I found that the information I was given was much easier to understand and digest than Nutrisense. I was able to follow along with the prompts and tracking tools really easily and the numbers I was getting back made sense. With Nutrisense, on the other hand, I found the app to be a little more cumbersome to navigate and not as sharp. But, the fact that an RD reached out to me immediately after signing up was a huge bonus for me.
Overall, you really can’t go wrong with choosing either Signos or Nutrisense, both will provide you with the tools and strategies you need to make small lifestyle changes that will help you lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle.