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Managing Type 2 Diabetes With Your Diet

Managing Type 2 Diabetes With Your Diet

Research has come a long way in finding cures for a number of life-threating diseases, but there is still no cure for Type 2 diabetes. However, research is showing that it may be possible for some people to reverse the condition. A combination strategy of weight loss and diet changes have shown that some are able to reach and maintain normal blood sugar levels without the use of medication. Before you shout for joy and box up your medication, remember the data shows that some people have had success with these measures. And there is still no cure for the condition; it is an ongoing disease. Even though there is a chance that you could end up in remission by following a weight loss plan and strict dietary intake, it isn’t something you should attempt to do without the oversight and input from your managing physician. To answer the question you still seem to be mulling around in your mind, there is evidence that yes, you can reverse diabetes. Here’s how others have done it.

Significant Weight Reduction

Losing weight seems to be the first step toward reversing a condition of diabetes if you haven’t needed to be insulin-dependent and you are still in the early years of diagnosis. One of the studies that followed weight management strategies for reversing the condition looked at the effects of a low-calorie diet on those who suffered from diabetes. Participants in several studies were limited to an average of 625-825 calories a day for between 2-5 months, after which their diet became a little less rigid but still allowed them to maintain their weight. Half of the participants in the studies were able to reverse their diabetes and maintain blood glucose levels at a normal for between six months to a year.

While this was a study done under the supervision of researchers, there is a similar plan available in the form of the HCG diet. Although you should never take part in a weight program or alter your medication without the supervision of a physician, this protocol restricts the caloric intake for participants and provides a limited selection of acceptable foods. This is a popular option for losing weight because it targets belly fat and encourages the body to rely on the stored fat for energy and fuel while on the diet. Many people have successfully lost weight through this plan, and it should be considered if you are thinking of addressing your weight concerns in order to reverse your diabetes. Those who lost weight through the research study lost at least 30 pounds, but they also hadn’t been diagnosed with the disease for very long when compared to those who didn’t succeed.

Engaging in Exercise

Increasing your physical activity levels, such as through a rigorous exercise may be a way to improve your diabetes, but this tends to be effective when you have already committed to and are following a strict eating plan. With a low-calorie diet and an improved effort at burning through existing stored fat and calories, you could find yourself on the path toward remission. One study found that people who cut at least 500-750 calories from their diet, took about 10,000 steps a day, and got at least two and a half hours of moderate exercise a week were able to reach almost normal blood sugar levels without medication. However, these individuals did maintain specific insulin and medication routine throughout the process, keeping them safe. Some of those who experienced success in this study were able to maintain their post-study levels long-term.  Combining weight loss and exercise seem to be the changes that need to occur if you are going to work towards a recession with your Type 2 diabetes.

Other Options

Some individuals could have problems with following a low calorie diet or they are physically unable to get enough exercise to help lose weight on their own. Bariatric surgery is an aggressive but invasive way to alter your weight. This process changes your digestive system and the size of your stomach to limit how much you will be able to eat. Although scientists haven’t been able to pinpoint the exact reason why, this option has been shown to have some success with individuals their ability to reverse diabetes. In addition to the weight loss that happens, some research is showing that it may be the work of hormones in the gut that help start to regulate the blood glucose levels. It is estimated that almost 75% of people who have gastric bypass and gastric sleeve surgery see their diabetes reversed.

You should never attempt to handle a medical condition as serious as Type 2 diabetes without the consultation of your primary care physician. However, you should speak to your doctor about the potential benefits losing weight and maintaining a healthy diet can have on your diabetes.


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About the author

Dr. Richard Smith, MD

5 min read