Voice-Activated Technology For Diabetes Care

If you want to know your blood sugar level, all you have to do is ask. Pose the question to Alexa, Siri, or Google Home, and new technology will allow these digital assistants to give you an answer on the spot.

Health-related voice recognition technology, including that designed specifically for people with diabetes, has come a long way since these devices started appearing in homes a few short years ago. Now that so many folks have become used to relying on Alexa and similar products for everything from turning off lights to buying groceries to finding a recipe for fettuccine alfredo, it makes sense that developers would turn their attention to harnessing their power to help people manage their health.

Sulli the Diabetes Guru

A prime example of how these home devices can help with diabetes management is “Sulli the Diabetes Guru,” introduced by Roche Diabetes Care in August 2020. An app that works with both Alexa and Google Assistant, Sulli can answer general questions about diabetes and deliver basic guidance on food, exercise, medication, glucose monitoring, and other healthy diabetes lifestyle habits. Sulli can answer queries like:

  • What is high blood sugar?
  • What should I be eating?
  • Is it OK to exercise before taking a blood sugar test?

The free app can also provide scheduled medication reminders, provide lifestyle tips, and even help users locate a nearby store to buy a fingerstick glucose monitor.

While Sulli doesn’t yet offer any personalized guidance and information, it is anticipated that such features will come with future versions of the app.

The Alexa Diabetes Challenge

Sulli is just one way developers are trying to leverage voice-activated devices to improve the lives of people with diabetes. Pharmaceutical company Merck teamed up with Amazon Web Services and New York-based innovation consultancy Luminary Labs in 2017 for the “Alexa Diabetes Challenge.” The program called for entrepreneurs, techies, and industry players to create open diabetes management solutions for Alexxa and similar voice-tech tools.

“Users will soon go far beyond turning on lights or calling an Uber, and will venture deeper into healthcare, helping people better manage treatments and communicate with caregivers,” Luminary said at the time. “From reminding people of their nutrition plans to scheduling reminders for insulin dosages, the Merck-sponsored Alexa Challenge will call on developers to push the boundaries of voice technology for people with diabetes.”

The grand prize winner for the challenge was called Sugarpod by Wellpepper, described as “[a] multimodal solution that provides specialized voice, mobile, video, and web interactions to support patient adherence to comprehensive care plans. It offers education, tips, and tracking tools, including a smart foot scanner, which uses a classifier to identify potential abnormalities.”

Calling on Alexa for assistance is just one way technology is transforming how those with diabetes manage their condition. Another, more immediately impactful development that has changed thousands of individuals’ lives is continuous glucose monitoring (CGM).

CGM is a tested, customizable transceiver device that helps those with diabetes stay in control of their condition and their life, providing constant real-time blood sugar information without the need for finger-pricking throughout the day.

Whether you’ve been living with diabetes for years or if you’ve recently received a diagnosis, CGM may be an excellent glucose monitoring solution. Contact us today to see if you qualify for CGM and access our guide to continuous glucose monitoring.


If you are not insured, or have a high deductible health insurance plan, you can still purchase the Freestyle Libre Reader and Sensors at extremely competitive prices. Prices starting as low as $99 per month

*Fingersticks are required for treatment decisions when you see Check Blood Glucose symbol, when symptoms do not match system readings when you suspect readings may be in accurate, or when you experience symptoms that may be due to high or low blood glucose.

Reference 1: Data on file. Abbott Diabetes Care. 2, FreeStyle Libre 14 day User’s Manual

Indications and Important Safety Information

FreeStyle Libre and FreeStyle Libre 14 day Flash Glucose Monitoring systems are continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) devices indicated for replacing blood glucose testing and detecting trends and tracking patterns aiding in the detection of episodes of hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia, facilitating both acute and long-term therapy adjustments in persons (age 18 and older) with diabetes. The systems are intended for single patient use and require a prescription.

CONTRAINDICATIONS: Remove the sensor before MRI, CT scan, X-ray, or diathermy treatment.

WARNINGS/LIMITATIONS: Do not ignore symptoms that may be due to low or high blood glucose, hypoglycemic unawareness, or dehydration. Check sensor glucose readings with a blood glucose meter when Check Blood Glucose symbol appears, when symptoms do not match system readings, or when readings are suspected to be inaccurate. The system does not have alarms unless the sensor is scanned, and the system contains small parts that may be dangerous if swallowed. The system is not approved for pregnant women, persons on dialysis, or critically-ill population. Sensor placement is not approved for sites other than the back of the arm and standard precautions for transmission of blood borne pathogens should be taken. The built-in blood glucose meter is not for use on dehydrated, hypotensive, in shock, hyperglycemic-hyperosmolar state, with or without ketosis, neonates, critically-ill patients, or for diagnosis or screening of diabetes. When using FreeStyle LibreLink app, access to a blood glucose monitoring system is required as the app does not provide one. Review all product information before use or contact Abbott Toll Free (855-632-8658) or visit www.freestylelibre.us for detailed indications for use and safety information.html. . FreeStyle, Libre, and related brand marks are trademarks of Abbott Diabetes Care Inc. in various jurisdictions. Other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. ©2018 Abbott. ADC-09691 vLO 10/18

*The FreeStyle LibreLink app and the FreeStyle Libre 14 day reader have similar but not identical features. Fingersticks are required for treatment decisions when you see Check Blood Glucose symbol, when symptoms do not match system readings, when you suspect readings may be inaccurate, or when you experience symptoms that may be due to high or low blood glucose.

The FreeStyle Libre 2 app and the FreeStyle Libre 2 reader have similar but not identical features. Fingersticks are required for treatment decisions when you see Check Blood Glucose symbol and when your glucose alarms and readings from the system do not match symptoms or expectations

‡‡‡Based on the sensor being replaced once every 14 days, and scanned at least once every 8 hours.

§§§Glucose readings are not available during 1-hour warm-up, when sensor is too hot or too cold, when you see an error or "LO" or "HI" message, or no current glucose reading