Out of the blue a very nice company (Dario) asked me whether I’d be interested in testing out a new product of theirs in exchange for a review on this blog (proof that someone must read it, right?). Seeing as it was a product aimed at helping Diabetics make their daily lives a little easier, I decided that it could only be a good thing.
From what I gather, the Dario is a new-ish product that isn’t yet fully available on the NHS; this means that you’re going to have to buy it (though the test strips are available on the NHS). Is this a bad thing? No. I would happily invest in one given its advantages (though I must admit some of these advantages are travel-based).
First of all, part of the Dario smart meter is app-based, which basically turns your phone into a glucose monitor. The app is free and comes with various tools for showing your data; including graphs, charts, carb intake, and logbooks. The great thing about this is that you can email all your data from a chosen point i.e. a day, a month, 3 months etc. straight to whoever you like. This is particularly helpful as it means I can email data to my consultant in the UK and discussions can lead from there. There’s also no need for physical diaries and, though there are other apps that do the same thing, this one is unique in that it makes testing your blood glucose levels far more convenient, which leads me to my next point…
As long as you have your phone and all-in-one Dario meter with you, you’re good to go. The all-in-one includes strip storage, lancets, and a glucose monitor that plugs into you phone. This means that you don’t have to carry around a wallet-sized bag, change batteries, or worry where your test strips have gone. The all-in-one fits into the palm of your hand and, due to it not having any electronic parts, is very lightweight. This, again, is a major advantage if you’re moving around a lot; I always felt when I was out without a bag that the normal blood glucose meter and its pack were too bulky to carry around in my pocket; I don’t have that problem anymore.
Now, compared to the blood sugar readings I get off my normal monitor (Freestyle), the Dario is pretty accurate; I’ve not checked my blood with both meters every time I’ve eaten (that’d be a waste of strips and I’m on a ‘strip budget’) but I have checked quite a few times and I’m very pleased with the match; it’s not perfect but within a decimal or two is more than acceptable. Of course, I’ve still got my normal monitor as backup just in case anything happens to my Dario which, given that it’s mainly plastic and isn’t in a bag of its own, could quite well happen. I suppose the disadvantage of it being lightweight is that it would only take a couple of drops for it to crack or even shatter. So, if you do decide to invest, make sure you have a backup, just in case.
All in all I’m more than happy with the Dario smart meter and I’m very pleased that I’ve got to try it out and see how it works. I think that any product that even tries to make living with diabetes a little bit easier is worth a shot and this one is doing a pretty good job so far. There’s no escaping the finger pricking, injecting (or pumping), and monitoring of blood sugar levels, but anything that makes it a little more convenient certainly has my vote!
The Dario is available here.
-Type 1 Traveller