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What is a spike?

Along your Lingo journey, you’ll get alerts that you’re 'spiking'. What does that mean? Here’s how to lean on Lingo to recognise and understand the why behind the spike.   

First things first, a spike is a sharp, marked rise in the amount of glucose in your blood, followed by a comparable decline. During the day, your glucose levels rise and fall many times, but a true spike is different. In your Lingo graph, a spike looks like a tall mountain, not a hill, or a steady, flat plain. Most of us experience a rise in glucose after a meal, but what we eat, our stress levels, exercise habits, and our metabolic factors can affect the speed, intensity, and duration of the rise.  Frequent and significant spikes can negatively impact your health.  They signal that there’s too much glucose currently circulating in your body.

With the help of Lingo, you’ll soon understand what caused a spike, how to manage spikes, and how to prevent spikes. We’ll notify you of a spike as soon as we detect one, tell you whether your glucose is on the rise or returning to baseline, and we’ll let you know when the spike is over. 

The intensity and the duration of the spike determines how many points you receive, and over the course of the day we’ll tally those points for you so you can see how much of an impact they have had on your body.  

When a spike occurs, you’ll want to look at the choices at your most recent meal.  After eating, it can take up to 90–120 minutes before a spike might occur. Many people might see two peaks in their spike after a meal, one around 30 minutes after eating and another around 90 minutes after eating. This can actually indicate good metabolic health.  

Stick with Lingo to learn the effect of a meal’s composition, as well as portions and choices of food and drinks on your glucose levels. You’ll also learn how to manage a spike after a meal, and how healthy habits, like exercise and de-stressing, can help you navigate right around future glucose spikes.

Glucose 101


  1. Ceriello A, et al. Glucose "peak" and glucose "spike": Impact on endothelial function and oxidative stress. Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2008 Nov;82(2):262-7. 
  2. de Andrade M.L., et al. Distinct metabolic profile according to the shape of the oral glucose tolerance test curve is related to whole glucose excursion: a cross-sectional study. BMC Endocr Disord. 2018 Aug 16;18(1):56.
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© 2023 Abbott. All rights reserved. Lingo and related marks are marks of the Abbott group of companies. Other marks are the property of their respective owners.Lingo Sensing Technology Unlimited Company is a private Unlimited Company with registered number 731659. Our registered office is at 70 Sir John Rogersons Quay, Dublin 2, D02 R296, Ireland.The Lingo system is not intended for medical use and is not intended for use in screening, diagnosis, treatment, cure, mitigation, prevention, or monitoring of diseases, including diabetes. The Lingo programme does not guarantee that everyone will achieve the same results as individual responses may vary. It is best to speak to your doctor for advise on starting any diet or exercise regime or if you have an eating disorder or a history of eating disorders.Do not use Lingo if you are pregnant. Dietary advice and Lingo Counts may not be suitable for you if you are pregnant.