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Wellness

Top 3 Glucose Test Strips for Managing Diabetes

For individuals dealing with diabetes, monitoring glucose levels becomes an integral part of their daily routine, necessitating a consistent supply of test strips. However, various factors can affect the functionality of these strips, ranging from sample size to result time and accuracy level. This variation often makes it challenging to determine the most suitable option, like choosing between One Touch test strips and Accu-Chek.

In this article, we will unveil our top three preferred brands and offer insights into the crucial aspects to consider while selecting diabetes test strips.

The Finest Glucose Test Strips

One Touch Ultra

Securing a spot in our top three choices is the One Touch Ultra, and here are the reasons behind its inclusion:

  • Rapid Results: Providing results in just five seconds ensures you receive timely and accurate readings.
  • Simplicity: Some strips may present challenges in determining if the blood sample is adequate for an accurate reading. However, the One Touch Ultra simplifies the process by clearly indicating when a sufficient sample is provided.

Accu-Chek

Next on our list is Accu-Chek, earning its place in the top three due to:

  • Minimal Blood Sample Requirement: Requiring only 0.6 microliters of blood sets these strips apart by reducing the discomfort and hassle during testing.
  • Accessible Wide-Mouth Test Strips: Some strips feature narrow designs that can complicate sample preparation. With Accu-Chek’s broader Aviva strips, accurate testing becomes hassle-free.

FreeStyle Precision Neo

Completing our top three recommendations is the FreeStyle Precision Neo, chosen for the following reasons:

  • No Coding Necessary: Simplifying usability by eliminating the need for coding.
  • Individual Packaging: Each test strip is individually wrapped, ensuring easy portability without concerns about contamination.
  • Flexible Blood Application: Offering both top-fill and end-fill options streamlines the testing process for maximum convenience.

Functionality of Diabetes Test Strips

A diabetes test strip comprises a small plastic strip with an absorbent pad that collects a drop of blood. This blood is then applied to the strip, which contains chemicals reacting to glucose presence, leading to color changes. A digital meter interprets this color alteration, displaying the results in mmol/L (millimoles per liter).

Selecting Suitable Diabetes Test Strips

While personal preferences vary, we’ve identified four essential criteria for choosing the ideal test strips for your needs.

Precision

The paramount factor is accuracy. It is crucial to select strips that provide results closely aligned with your actual blood sugar levels. Some strips outperform others, underscoring the importance of reviewing feedback before making a purchase. Whichever brand you opt for, the key is to ensure blood glucose readings fall within 15% or 15 mg/dL of laboratory figures at least 95% of the time.

Past concerns regarding strip accuracy prompted a report from the Diabetes Technology Society, indicating that out of 18 assessed strips, only six met the 95% benchmark. Conversely, the least accurate strips displayed accuracy rates below 75%.

Convenience

Convenience also plays a significant role in strip selection. Some strips necessitate finger pricking before blood application, while others work with lancets, streamlining the process.

Newer strips requiring no blood offer a non-invasive alternative by assessing glucose levels in saliva, appealing to those averse to blood handling.

Cost

Price naturally factors into purchasing decisions. Test strip prices vary from $0.50 to over $1.00 per strip, necessitating a balance between accuracy and affordability.

Some health insurance policies cover test strip expenses, whereas others do not, mandating a review of coverage options with your provider.

User-Friendliness

User-friendliness is integral. While some strips involve finger pricking and blood application, others simply require tongue placement for effortless testing, typically minimizing discomfort.

Clarity of readings is equally crucial, with complicated strip interpretations potentially leading to inaccurate results.

Importance of Blood Glucose Monitors

Test strips constitute only a segment of the glucose monitoring process. A blood glucose monitor, reading the strips and displaying results, is also essential.

Monitors range from $10 to over $100, with costlier models generally offering greater accuracy and advanced features like multi-reading storage.

Monitor calibration may be necessary with some devices, ensuring result accuracy, unlike non-calibration models. Consider ease of use when selecting a monitor, opting for a suitable option based on your requirements and preferences.

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