<aside> ⭐ This page shows the most up-to-date scoring methodology for Meal Scores. If you’re looking for how previous scores were calculated, you can find them in the Other Releases section below.


Version 1.3 (current)

What’s new in this version

Scores range from 1 to 10, with 10 being optimal. To calculate this score, we look at three aspects of your glucose response in the two hours following a logged meal.

Your Meal Score (sometimes also referred to as “Zone Score”) quantifies how foods and activities, in combination, affect your blood sugar levels.

The feature and why we built it

A Zone is a roughly 2-hour window following a logged meal. The Zone Score aims to capture how your glucose levels respond to everything you do during that window (i.e., not just food but also physical activity, stress, and more).

Levels developed ‘Zones’ to reflect that you don’t eat food in a vacuum. How your body responds to a given ingredient depends on what you do before and after you eat it: Are you consuming other foods? Going for a jog? Going to sleep? All those factors influence glycemic response, and your Zone score reflects that interaction.

The Zone Score also takes into account the macronutrient content of what you eat. While a fairly stable glucose response is ideal, it’s not the only thing that determines how metabolically healthy a meal is. You could eat bacon and drink vodka all day and get a stable glucose line, but it would not make you healthy.

Generally speaking, you should aim to consume enough protein and fiber, while minimizing carbs (especially refined or naked carbs) and unhealthy fats. You should also favor whole foods over processed ones, and avoid highly refined seed oils.

This Zone Score rewards gradual, minimal changes in glucose because stable blood sugar supports quality of life in the short term and metabolic health in the long term.

This Zone Score rewards gradual, minimal changes in glucose because stable blood sugar supports quality of life in the short term and metabolic health in the long term.

With the scoring system, the goal is not to achieve a perfect 10 every time. Instead, by offering a simple record of each Zone, we hope to help members track how various combinations of foods and activities affect their bodies. You may find, for instance, that eating an apple on its own leads to a Zone Score of 6, but an apple followed by a walk generates an 8. This simple, quantitative difference may be a helpful way of thinking about how to approach your food and your days.

<aside> 🥗 Levels recommends aiming for a zone score of 7 or above on most meals.


“The lesson doesn’t have to be never eat apples,” says Grant. “By thinking in terms of Zones, we hope people can appreciate, ‘Oh, if I’m eating an apple, I’ll need something else in that Zone as well—maybe a walk, or maybe some almond butter on the apple.”

Zones can also make it easier to observe trends in your days. For instance, you may notice that your morning Zones tend to be lower than your evening Zones or vice versa—an actionable insight that may motivate you to pay more attention to your choices early in the day.

Note that a Zone Score is not a diagnosis: A single score of 10 won’t make you metabolically fit, and a 3 doesn’t mean you’re ill. Instead, aim for long-term success and improvement, like regularly scoring 7 or above. If you consistently score 6 or below and experience energy swings, eating for more stable blood sugar may help.

Strategies for bumping up your Zone Scores include: