As a note, Sigrid Glucose Stabiliser is a Your Diabestie Podcast Sponsor.
Today’s episode of Your Diabestie discusses preventative healthcare and the importance of proactive measures to prevent chronic lifestyle diseases.
Sana Alajmovic, the CEO of Sigrid, shared her personal connection to diabetes and her inspiration to work in preventative healthcare.
Sigrid’s technology uses Silica to slow down digestion, reduce caloric uptake, balance blood sugar, and prevent the development of type 2 diabetes.
The effectiveness of the glucose stabilizer in managing blood sugar levels was highlighted, and the conversation touched on the importance of individualized solutions for diabetes management, and the need to live a balanced life while striving for blood sugar balance.
Mila and Sana’s conversation underscored the multifaceted role of food in both nourishment and social connection, and the importance of preventative health and self-care.
Your Diabestie Episode 12 Topics: Interview with Sana Alajmovic, Co-founder and CEO of Sigrid Therapeutics
Sana’s Background and Passions for preventative health
Mila welcomes Sana Alajmovic, co-founder and CEO of Sigrid, to the podcast. Sanaa discusses her family’s experience with diabetes and how it led her to focus on preventative healthcare. She also shares her encounter with a professor of physiology, Tore Bengtsson, and his groundbreaking work on understanding the mechanisms behind type 2 diabetes.
Introduction of Sigrid and Glucose Stabilizer
Sana chats about the development of Sigrid Glucose Stabiliser, a technology designed to improve health and prevent chronic diseases. Mila shares a personal experience with the glucose stabilizer, highlighting its effectiveness in stabilizing blood sugar levels and its impact on managing diabetes.
Discussion on GLP-1 Agonists vs Glucose Stabilizer
The conversation delved into the role of GLP-1 agonists, particularly Ozempic, in treating certain patient populations and the paradigm shift it brought in understanding obesity as a complex chronic disease. The speakers also compared the benefits of glucose stabilizer, emphasizing its natural, non-hormonal, and sustainable approach to weight control and blood sugar management, making it a more affordable and safer long-term option for certain patient populations.
Importance of Healthy Eating and Enjoying Food
Sana and Mila Discuss the significance of maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle, drawing attention to the balance between nutritious choices and occasional indulgence. They emphasize the social and celebratory aspects of food, underscoring its role in bringing people together and adding joy to life. Speaker 1 adds that joy is a vital nutrient, and eating without joy diminishes the ability to savor beloved foods.
Discussion on the Importance of Preventative Health and Self-Care
Sana and Mila engage in a conversation about the significance of preventative health and self-care, focusing on the groundbreaking impact of glucose stabilizer in clinical studies. Sana emphasizes the importance of staying true to the vision and educating others about prevention, while Mila expresses appreciation for the positive impact on people’s lives and the shift towards consumer-driven healthcare.
0:03 – Mila Clarke
Perfect. And then we’re going to hop in. Welcome to the Your Diabetes podcast, the podcast that ensures you don’t have to do diabetes alone. My name is Mila. I live with latent autoimmune diabetes in adults. And today I have an extremely special guest on the podcast. You might recognize the name Sigrid if you’re already a part of my community, because with a great partnership that we have, I’m able to offer free diabetes lifestyle coaching to every member of my community because of this amazing company with an amazing mission.
0:39 – Mila Clarke
So today on the podcast, I have Sigrid’s co-founder and CEO Sanaa Alajmovic on the podcast. Welcome Sanaa.
0:49 – Sana Alajmovic
Thank you, dear Mila, for having me. It’s a pleasure.
0:53 – Mila Clarke
Absolutely. And I’m so excited to talk to you, but also to have the audience just hear your story and hear the ways that your company is really trying to really focus on preventative health and change people’s health. And I always like to start out by asking my guests, what’s your connection to diabetes?
1:14 – Sana Alajmovic
Well, first of all, I grew up with a father who was pre-diabetic and he did not get the support from the health care system that he needed to reverse his pre-diabetes. He was simply told to go home to eat more healthily and exercise more. And let me also tell you, my father is a doctor. So if anyone is aware of what diabetes is, he is. But even himself, he had a hard time making these lifestyle changes. And it was also a lot of related to stress. We could see 20 patients in a day. So eventually, 10 years down the line, he developed full-blown type 2 diabetes.
1:58 – Sana Alajmovic
And that’s when the doctor suddenly said, oh, Dr. Lymovich, now we have tons of medications to give you. And that was an eye opener for me because I got to experience as a family member that, you know, a healthcare system where we work not proactively, but reactively. And I think that’s utterly wrong. And a couple of years ago, the same things happened to my brother, who got the diagnosis of being pre-diabetic. As you all already are well aware, there’s a genetic component in developing diabetes.
2:35 – Sana Alajmovic
And so it was, you know, back at this time with my brother. And I’ve lived with family members now. I’ve seen what it does to you when your blood sugar goes down, the mood swings. When we’ve been traveling, he has experienced ketocidosis. So it’s just, you know, It is not easy.
3:01 – Mila Clarke
Yeah, absolutely. It’s one of the, I think, next to living with diabetes, being a person who loves someone with diabetes and seeing them go through the motions of diabetes. Like my mother had type 2 diabetes, and she unfortunately passed away two years ago. But she, I just saw her struggle a lot with it. And the frustration. And then I also like intimately understood it, because I was going through a lot of the similar things with my own diagnosis. So I think having that perspective is so interesting, because you can see it from the outside, you can see what your family member is going through.
3:42 – Mila Clarke
And I would be curious, how did seeing that experience for you inspire or inform your work and what you do now?
3:55 – Sana Alajmovic
Because I started researching, well, what is this disease? And can it be prevented? And then I realized that prediabetes is actually reversible. Type 2 diabetes, depending on where you are along the line, but late stage type 2 diabetes is very difficult to reverse. Some states can be done with drastic lifestyle changes, but majority of people they don’t get healthy from there, from there, from the diabetes. So that’s when I started to realize, wait a second, my dad is not alone.
4:27 – Sana Alajmovic
And I started talking to other friends, I started talking to other people, and I soon realized, well, everyone seems to know someone with type 2 diabetes. And, you know, statistics showed it was half a billion people living with prediabetes, another half a billion living with type 2 diabetes. And there has never been a type 2 diabetic, which wasn’t a prediabetic at some point. So that really made me and made me convinced that I wanted to work within healthcare, and I wanted to work within preventative healthcare, because that’s where I feel we can make, you know, the most impact.
5:06 – Sana Alajmovic
And I was fortunate enough to meet a professor of physiology, a well-known professor, Tore Bengtsson, here in Sweden, which has spent 25, 30 years of his career understanding the mechanisms behind why we develop type 2 diabetes. And he had this amazing invention that he had been working on. And I was just taking it back. And I said, we need to get this out to patients, to people, to consumers. It can’t just be a great invention in a world-class science that’s just going to be stuff.
5:42 – Mila Clarke
And so tell us about that invention.
5:45 – Sana Alajmovic
Yes, so we started Sigrid, and Sigrid is actually a female Viking name. It means beautiful victory. And the beautiful victory we’re aspiring to achieve is to bring world-class science and research to consumers and patients so that we can prevent people from falling sick with chronic lifestyle diseases, but also at the same time enable them to live life to their fullest without restrictions. And we have developed and patented a unique technology based on an Silica, it’s a natural mineral, which is extracted and purified and engineered.
6:20 – Sana Alajmovic
So it basically works like a sponge in your gut and it traps these digestive enzymes. So it slows down your digestion and reduces caloric uptake and balances out your blood sugar, helps you sustain a healthy weight. And just reduces bloating, gives you more energy, and also prevents you from developing type 2 diabetes.
6:46 – Mila Clarke
Yeah, it’s pretty fantastic and remarkable. And I have to tell the audience, too, that I heard about this through you guys. And so what was interesting was you had an event in Miami, but I couldn’t attend. And so you were like, we’ll send you some product, try it out, see how it does for you. And much like a lot of other things that I’ve tried out and kind of tested to see what could make diabetes management easier, I was like, okay, I’ll try. We’ll see. But I was absolutely shocked in the difference that it made in the stability of my blood sugars.
7:24 – Mila Clarke
And instead of seeing lines after my meals that were kind of this roller coaster, this like up and down, up and down, I was seeing these straighter curves in my glucose. And the only thing that I had changed was taking glucose stabiliser, and Sana has it here if you’re watching the video version. Yeah, taking glucose stabiliser, two tablets, right before my meal and doing nothing else different. And I was just like, wow, this is really powerful, but also so remarkable and seeing like the drastic difference from one day to the next.
8:01 – Mila Clarke
And so it really, it works, it works. And it’s backed by clinical studies. You know, how many years of studies had you?
8:09 – Sana Alajmovic
Oh my gosh, 13 years of research and development. And just and just to tie to that, when when consumers and patients share this data with us or tell us, you know, I mean, I always want to cry because you know, that’s why we, that’s, that’s why I’ve been spending my last decade of my career and my professional life building this company, just to see that impact. And my brother, who was pre-diabetic, has now been using this, and he has been able to reverse to normal stage. He doesn’t have pre-diabetes any longer.
8:43 – Sana Alajmovic
So I feel, in one way, I couldn’t save my dad, but I’ve been given the opportunity to save my brother, Samir. Yeah,
8:51 – Mila Clarke
That’s incredible. That’s amazing. And like such a testament to what you’re doing, and that that work has really paid off, for sure. And I kind of want to switch gears a little bit, because we talked about healthcare systems being less preventative and more reactive to people’s health. And One of the kind of like big stories of 2023 was about ozempic or semaglutide and drugs that are GLP-1 agonists that essentially do very similar things to glucose stabiliser, but they are wildly expensive.
9:33 – Mila Clarke
They are so hard to come by. There is always a shortage of them, so people can’t reliably take them at times. And so I would love to know from you, describe the pros and cons of these medications for the long term versus incorporating something like cigarette glucose stabiliser into your daily routine.
9:58 – Sana Alajmovic
First of all, I think the GLP-1s and Ozempic have a huge role to play for certain patient populations, which do not have access to effective treatments. So I think in that aspect, you know, they are certainly great. I also think what they’ve made us realizes also is that obesity is not a choice. It is a complex chronic disease with underpinnings in biology, societal factors, environmental factors, and it’s really shift the focus, you know, actually that it can be treated. So I think, I think Ozempic has been a paradigm shift in that way.
10:43 – Sana Alajmovic
And in that way, it’s great. But what it’s also happened is that a lot of other people, normal weight people without diabetes, are taking it, which is also led to this shortage we’re seeing in patients that really need these medications. And what happens is, you know, this is still a drug which you’re injecting. So you are going to have these side effects. You know, there’s risk of, I mean, there are gastrointestinal side effects, vomiting, nausea, that’s one thing. But then 25 to 30% of the weight you’re losing is actually muscles.
11:23 – Sana Alajmovic
So that will put you at a higher risk for bone fractures. So I think you really need to have, it needs to be a risk benefit ratio before you embark on these type of invasive therapies. The glucose stabiliser on the other hand, this is a natural mineral which is engineered to work locally in your gut. There is no systemic absorption. There’s nothing going into your bloodstream. It’s not affecting other organs. It leaves the body naturally and together with food so it is a non-hormonal solution.
11:58 – Sana Alajmovic
It is effective in that it is cutting away these carbs and fats so you have less caloric uptake and that is evening out both your lipid curves as well as your blood sugar curves and helping with the weight loss and also the weight control and is doing so in a very natural, sustainable way. You don’t need a prescription to buy glucose stabiliser. It’s at a much affordable price point than a Zempik. So I think it just makes more sense for certain types of patient population or consumers to be to be, to be choosing something more sustainable and safer long-term.
12:45 – Sana Alajmovic
12:46 – Mila Clarke
Absolutely. And I, I love what you said about just like the different needs of different people and how like GLP-1 agonist injections can be good for certain populations of people. But also, it needs to be kind of this balance of what’s the risk versus like your health benefits at the end of it. And that’s so important to recognize and realize that, you know, we are all bio-individual. So not everything, yeah, is different solutions that work really well. So I really appreciate you mentioning that and saying that.
13:26 – Sana Alajmovic
Yeah, because what it also does, just much like the Zempix, it also stimulates your GLP-1, but it does so naturally and not to the same extreme extent as the GLP-1 does. But given our product slows down the digestion, so you feel fuller for longer, it reduces the need for cravings. And something we’ve also noticed is when normal weight people or taking those, a lot of them feel actually quite tired. They don’t have the same amount of energy. You are not going to feel that with glucose stabiliser.
14:00 – Sana Alajmovic
You are going to feel more energized. And that’s also because we’re actually more effective in cutting post-meal blood sugar So the blood sugar right after a meal. And we’ve also heard or consumers coming back to us and patients as well that feel that ozempic has maybe not been optimal when it comes to the post-meal blood sugar. It reduces the long-term blood sugar because it reduces weight, but not so much that post-meal blood sugar, which we have been shown to be really, really good at.
14:35 – Mila Clarke
Yeah, absolutely. It’s it’s so like remarkable seeing something like this working and that exists because I think people have struggled for so long with diabetes management and especially with post meal blood sugars when you’re not on insulin and you really the only things you can do or maybe or drink more water to lower your blood sugars. And so having something that actually really works to help you lower those postprandial or post-meal blood sugars is so cool. Every time I think about it, I’m like, this is the most awesome thing.
15:10 – Mila Clarke
Like, I want everybody to know about it and know that it’s out there because it really, like, the way that it works, if you wear CGM or if you do finger sticks and try to keep track, Yeah, like it’s, it’s really interesting to see just like how it’s actually working and comparing those glucose graphs, which I’m a nerd, so I always love doing. But I also wanted to know from you, so you spent a lot of time in diabetes research, and you know diabetes pretty intimately.
20:47 – Mila Clarke
So we have a special guest on the podcast now noodle was definitely trying to voice his opinion about how much he thinks stabiliser is the most wonderful thing. So we were talking about some of the ways that you think, you know, balance and living a healthier lifestyle can work for people with diabetes. So I would love to know more about some of the methods or tactics you think would work really well.
23:36 – Mila Clarke
So from your time and research, what do you think are the best ways to balance and maintain blood sugars?
23:51 – Sana Alajmovic
Yes. So first of all, I would like to say that’s one of the reasons we love working with you, Mila, because you show very clearly that a diabetes diagnosis, it does not mean that life ends. You can still enjoy life to the fullest, but you need to lead a balanced life. And there’s a saying that your genetics load the gun, but your lifestyle pulls the trigger. So it’s very important to eat healthily. What does that mean? It means more proteins and fibers to try to move every day to exercise.
24:32 – Sana Alajmovic
But I also very much believe in living life to the fullest. And you know, if you want to have that piece of bread or you want to have that pasta or that glass of red wine to to actually also And indulge at times because that also gives you happiness and it’s a it’s a long life you’re going to live hopefully so you have to also find. You know, find some pleasure and and and food is especially when we’re together with friends and family eating together. And that’s why really why I love our own product so much.
25:10 – Sana Alajmovic
It’s because it allows you to actually, you know, enjoy yourself in moderation and still get good health and feel healthy.
25:21 – Mila Clarke
Yeah, absolutely. I like one of the things that I’ve kind of adopted recently is joy is also a nutrient because if you are living this kind of like joyless existence, you’re not able to like enjoy the foods that you love. That’s just like not an existence.
25:40 – Sana Alajmovic
At all. Because food is so much more. It’s also social gathering. You know, it’s it’s a celebration of life in all of our important celebrations and holidays. We all gather around the table, you know, around food, so it’s very hard. And I mean, I’ve seen it with my own dad like it’s been. Of course he’s made healthier choices, but we’re from Bosnia. We’re from the Balkans. You know you have bread with every meal and he’s not going to cut out that bread. It’s going to be very difficult for him.
26:10 – Sana Alajmovic
And then I also believe in in building a community and seeking out communities like the angry woman where you can bounce off ideas where you can find inspiration where you can help one another. And I think you know the work you’re doing is amazing and inspiring others.
26:56 – Mila Clarke
Perfect. And then I have one more question for you, because I, I’m really interested in this just personally. But recently, you were featured in Forbes about how groundbreaking glucose stabiliser has been in clinical studies. And one of the things that I thought was really interesting was that when you were first seeking out funding, partners told you that prevention was not profitable, that it wasn’t like a good area to focus in. And I think that you’ve really flipped that on its head and proved to them that prevention is something that people really, really want.
27:34 – Mila Clarke
People want good health. They don’t want to live with chronic diseases. They don’t want to have to be taking medications every day for the rest of their life. And so for you kind of seeing it through the whole process, how does it make you feel to know that prevention is really important to people and you’re doing something to change that?
27:55 – Sana Alajmovic
Thank you for that question, Mila. I wasn’t expecting that. I think it’s about staying true to your vision. And I’ve always thought prevention is better than cure. And if I’m gonna build my legacy and spend a decade of my life building Sigrid, I will do you know, I will do it in something I believe in. And I really strongly believe that even if we were early on talking about prevention, whether it wasn’t trendy or cool, at least then we have a role in educating everyone else. And we have, you know, it’s so, if it was easy, it would already have been done.
28:39 – Sana Alajmovic
So to me, it was just not an option to quit. And now we are at a space where everyone is aware of glucose, how it impacts not only diabetes, but glucose impacts so many other things. If we’re tired, if we have acne, if we have dry skin, if we develop Alzheimer’s, even some form of cancers. So blood sugar has become mainstream. And I think that’s wonderful. I think it’s great that people, whether they’re diabetic or not, are more aware of the benefits of controlling their blood sugar.
29:17 – Sana Alajmovic
And I just hope for Sigrid to continue being that strong force and to inspire more people and to create this global impact and hopefully, you know, make a shift also in healthcare. So we’re moving from preventative. So, sorry, that you have to cut, but maybe to say like, you know, so we’re moving into self-care. Where we as consumers can take charge of our own health. We are not dependent on the healthcare system to fix our health.
29:51 – Mila Clarke
Yeah, absolutely. I feel like that is like the perfect place to end on. Thank you so much for just everything that you’re doing for preventative health and self-care and just enabling people to live happier, healthier lives. I think that’s like something that as human beings, we all want. We all want to live the longest, healthiest life possible. And you’re doing that. You are doing that in a major way and helping people to achieve that.
30:21 – Sana Alajmovic
I would also just love to end with this quote. It’s not about the years in your life. It’s about the life in your years.
30:30 – Mila Clarke
That is beautiful. All right, that’s the mic drop.
30:40 – Sana Alajmovic
And likewise, Mila, thank you so much for what you’re doing for our community as well. Thank you. Giving people hope and showing them that it’s possible to live a fulfill, I mean, to lead a fulfilling life even though you’re diabetic.
30:57 – Mila Clarke
Thank you so much. That means the world to me. I appreciate it so much. Thank you for sharing today on the podcast and for being here, Sana. You are just a brilliant, amazing person. I want to let the audience know that if you want to read the transcript of this episode or you want to see the video podcast, visit divestipod.com. I’ll also leave my link for a discount on glucose stabiliser. So that you’re able to try it out for yourself. Enjoy the benefits of living your best, healthiest life possible.
31:35 – Mila Clarke
So thank you again, Sana, for being on the podcast today. And I hope that everyone has a great one. I’ll see you next time.
31:44 – Sana Alajmovic