blood glucose monitor
Blood glucose monitors offer average readings, meal markers, trends and even Bluetooth syncing with your smartphone for record-keeping. Image Credit: Shutterstock

At home, a glucose meter is an irreplaceable tool for people with diabetes. If blood sugar levels are higher or lower than expected numbers, diabetic individuals can, then, take appropriate steps to fall back into a healthy range. Careful monitoring and management of blood glucose levels can help avoid serious health complications.

Dr Alshimaa Rezk, a specialist endocrinologist at Medcare Children and Women Hospital in Dubai, encourages investment in a reliable glucose monitor, if you've been diagnosed with diabetes types 1 and 2, as well as gestational diabetes in pregnancy.

"Both high and low levels of blood glucose have complications - these include kidney, eye and heart problems, which can be prevented if we keep an eye on the numbers," said Dr Rezk.

How can a glucometer help with managing diabetes?

The convenience of having a glucose meter nearby allows you to self-manage food and exercise daily. But what's a healthy sugar range for you will not be the target for another diabetic individual.

Dr Rezk tells us that the target glucose levels or the expected numbers will vary from patient to patient based on certain factors, such as age. Once you have this piece of information from your health provider, you're ready to monitor at home.

Dr Rezk explained: "When the patient sees that their blood sugar is increasing, they can exercise for five minutes or so to lower it, or if it's always high, they can alter their diet accordingly. And, if the levels are lower than the expected number, they'll know to eat or drink something extra."

Which blood glucose meter is the best for me?

blood glucose monitor
Sensor-based monitors don't rely on blood for readings, but they can get costly in the long run. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Most of us are familiar with monitors that require pricking a finger and dropping a sample onto a test strip. Those looking for a painless method are in for some good news.

"Nowadays, blood glucose levels can be measured without pricking. Patients can apply a sensor to their upper arm and scan it with their smartphone to capture all the glucose data, whenever they want. This method is more advanced as it also monitors hypoglycaemia or low blood sugar," said Dr Rezk.

A diabetic individual may be asked to check in at least four to five times a day, which is why Dr Rezk finds scanner or sensor-based monitors far more convenient. She does caution that the sensor can take a couple of days to work properly.

Another word of advice, adds our expert, is to visit your health provider if you have a family history of diabetes, as a preventative measure. Monitoring is only applicable to those with a diagnosis.

We've gathered highly rated blood glucose monitoring devices below, paying close attention to user reviews who quote their experience with diabetes. Shop with an Amazon Prime membership to get your monitor to you as soon as today.

1. Best Overall: GlucoRx Nexus Blue Blood Glucose Monitoring System


  • Bluetooth-enabled device that syncs results with smartphone
  • Large, easy-to-read display
  • Strip ejection function
  • Delivers results in five seconds
  • Comes with strips and lancets


  • Strips and lancet replacements can be pricey

The GlucoRx Nexus Blue meter kit comes with everything you need to get started - the lancets, bottle of test strips and the easy-to-read monitor device. It can store up to 1,000 readings and quickly delivers results within five seconds of strip insertion. What we love about this meter is its Bluetooth functionality. All glucose data automatically transfers to your smartphone via the GlucoRx app. Reviewers find the connection seamless and convenient for record-keeping. After a week of readings, the app offers more helpful insights, such as the glucose level average and trends, they add. It works on both Android and iOS devices.

Warranty: Amazon offers a one-year extended warranty for Dh23 and two years for Dh33.

2. Best Non-Pricking Device: FreeStyle Libre Sensor Flash System for Glucose Monitoring (14-Day System)


  • Discrete way of glucose monitoring
  • Measures glucose continuously
  • Scans via smartphone app
  • Shows trends in an easy graph line


  • Can come off if not applied properly
  • One sensor lasts 14 days only

The only sensor-based monitor on our list, the FreeStyle Libre sensor is a flash system for glucose monitoring, meaning tests are free of blood. A small circular patch goes on the back of the upper arm and continuously measures glucose every minute. Its applicator apparatus inserts a thin, flexible fibre just under the skin to measure interstitial fluid glucose. Once it's on, you can use the app to scan a quick, painless reading of your levels via your smartphone. These numbers are, then, visualised on a helpful graph trend to give individuals an overview. All data can be shared with your doctor using various FreeStyle apps. Each patch lasts for up to 14 days, so replacements can get expensive. However, with continuous and effortless reading, reviewers are able to discover what factors contribute to their high sugar levels in a day, such as stress. Some complain about the patch peeling off in a day, so it's important to follow application instructions closely.

Warranty: Amazon offers a one-year extended warranty for Dh23 and two years for Dh33.

3. Best for Average Readings: Beurer GL44 Glucometer


  • Displays average values from seven to 90 days
  • Measures in five seconds
  • Connects to PC to transfer stored data
  • Comes with test strips, lancets and puncture device


  • No Bluetooth

Another starter kit worth looking into is one by German manufacturer Beurer. The GL44 Glucometer arrives with a puncture device, 10 lancets and 10 test strips. It also carries a large screen like the GlucoRx meter for ease of legibility, with an internal memory of 480 readings. You can get average blood glucose values from the last seven, 14, 30 or 90 days. Though it doesn't have built-in Bluetooth, the device can be connected to a PC using the included USB cable to evaluate your glucose diary. Reviewers comment on its user-friendly performance and portable size, but do advise applying an adequate amount of blood to get a proper reading on the first try.

Warranty: Amazon offers a one-year extended warranty for Dh12 and two years for Dh17.

4. Best Value: Accu-Chek Instant System for Monitoring


  • Screen has a colour meter for visual aid
  • Connects to phone via Bluetooth
  • Easy legibility
  • Wide dosing area on the test strips
  • Strip ejecting button


  • Package contents may vary

The Accu-Chek glucose monitor is one many are familiar with. Its Instant System device has a screen dotted with a visual colour guide that lets you know if your result is high, low or within the target range. The black backlit display offers a clear reading in white. Just like our best overall, the meter features a strip ejector button to hygienically dispose of used strips. You'll also have an easier time applying blood to the wide dosing area on the Accu-Chek strips. Above all, it can connect to a smartphone app via Bluetooth to log results automatically and draw up graphs. Reviewers have a positive experience with the device itself, but some find test strips and other accessories missing from their package. UAE-based buyers do note that these peripherals are easily available in local pharmacies.

Warranty: Amazon offers a one-year extended warranty for Dh12 and two years for Dh17.

5. Best Portable: Ascensia Diabetes Care Contour Next One Blood Glucose Monitoring System


  • Slim and portable for when out and about
  • Smart light indicates readings at a glance
  • Meal and fast markers
  • Strips allow second blood application
  • Bluetooth connection


  • Strips are expensive, per reviews

If you travel a lot or need a glucose meter in your pouch at all times, the Contour Next One monitor is our most portable and discrete option. Sporting a novel, space-saving design, the stick-shaped meter has a smart light on one end that glows in red, yellow and green to signal results below, above and in the target range, respectively. What's great about its test strips is that they accept a second application of blood if the first blood sample isn't enough, so you get to save more. This tiny device syncs to the Contour app via Bluetooth, where you can set testing reminders, share reports, view graphs and more. Reviewers are impressed with the option to mark meals and fasts when testing.

Warranty: Amazon offers a one-year extended warranty for Dh6 and two years for Dh9.

Our recommendations are independently chosen by Gulf News editors. If you decide to shop through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission, as we are part of Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.