Time and time again we see reports of people with a diagnosis of Type 2 Diabetes being reversed through making different nutritional choices. To understand this, it is first necessary to understand how and why people might get a diagnosis of Type 2 Diabetes or Pre-Diabetes.
The most common cause of type 2 diabetes is obesity-related, which generally follows a vicious cycle pattern:
Diet high in calories -particularly if high in refined carbohydrates.
Insulin levels in the bloodstream rise to cope with the high- and quick-acting carb intake.
Weight is gained around the belly (central or truncal obesity).
Consistently high insulin levels lead to the body’s cells becoming resistant to insulin and commonly lead to weight gain.
High insulin levels also increase weight gain.
Insulin resistance leads to an increase in blood sugar levels, particularly after meals.
The pancreas produces more insulin to cope with rising blood sugar levels.
High sugar levels lead to feelings of lethargy and high insulin levels lead to increased hunger.
Hunger often leads to overeating and lethargy, with less physical activity being taken.
Overeating, less activity and high insulin levels all lead to further weight gain and more insulin resistance.
Consistently high demand on the pancreas to produce extra insulin leads to damage of the pancreas’ insulin-producing beta cells.
Beta cell damage results in the body struggling to produce enough insulin, and steeper rises in blood sugar levels leads to more recognisable symptoms of diabetes, such as thirst and a frequent need to urinate
To reverse diabetes, you need to be able to break this cycle by taking the strain off your insulin-producing cells.
Low-carbohydrate diets are known for lowering the amount of insulin the body needs to produce, resulting in less insulin resistance.
A study published in 2014 by the Second University of Naples showed that a low-carbohydrate Mediterranean diet was able to achieve significant rates of remission in people with type 2 diabetes. After one year of following the diet, 15% of participants achieved remission and, after six years, 5% had achieved remission on the diet – a stunning achievement.
By comparison, low-fat diets were not as effective in the study. After one year, 4% of participants on a low-fat diet had achieved remission and, after six years, 0% of participants had achieved remission.
A low GL style diet, as espoused by Patrick Holford, has also been found to be effective in reversing Type 2 Diabetes.
(Content from Diabetes.co.uk 2018)