Fitbit teams up with UnitedHealthcare as it gets more serious about diabetes

New pilot program will give patients a Fitbit tracker
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Fitbit sees diabetes management as one of the next big opportunities to pounce on. It recently invested $6 million in Sano, a company that makes a coin-size glucose monitor, and partnered with diabetes management company One Drop. Oh, and it's working with Dexcom to let Fitbit Ionic users track their glucose levels (via the Dexcom G5 sensor) on the smartwatch.

Now, it's partnering with American healthcare insurer UnitedHealthcare on a type 2 diabetes management pilot program. Participants will be given either a Fitbit Charge 2 or Ionic, which they'll use along with a Dexcom monitor, to see how their activity levels are impacting their glucose levels.

Physical activity is an important part of managing blood glucose levels, but it can also put diabetics at risk of hypoglycemia, so keeping an eye on activity levels is beneficial. Participants will get personalized coaching to help them increase glucose control and minimize medications.

Read this: How wearable tech is improving the life of diabetics

Fitbit said diabetes is an "important area of focus" for the company right now. More than 29 million people in the US suffer from the condition, and tech giants including Apple are looking at ways to tackle it. Rumors abound that companies are trying to solve non-invasive glucose monitoring, but that could be years away. Until then, management will be key.

Fitbit teams up with UnitedHealthcare as it gets more serious about diabetes

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Hugh Langley


Now at Business Insider, Hugh originally joined Wareable from TechRadar where he’d been writing news, features, reviews and just about everything else you can think of for three years.

Hugh is now a correspondent at Business Insider.

Prior to Wareable, Hugh freelanced while studying, writing about bad indie bands and slightly better movies. He found his way into tech journalism at the beginning of the wearables boom, when everyone was talking about Google Glass and the Oculus Rift was merely a Kickstarter campaign - and has been fascinated ever since.

He’s particularly interested in VR and any fitness tech that will help him (eventually) get back into shape. Hugh has also written for T3, Wired, Total Film, Little White Lies and China Daily.

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