1. Home
  2. Ask the Expert
  3. Questions and Answers  
Main content

Question & Answer

Reversing Type-2 Diabetes with Crash Diet? | Ask the Expert
The body’s metabolic processes are altered with <a href="https://www.mylifestages.org/medicallibrary/MedLibrary.page?medlib=1&section=healthinfo&page=article&sgml_id=hw135189">type 2 diabetes</a>. Both genetics and lifestyle factors affect the insulin producing cells of the pancreas and insulin sensitivity of body tissues. However, more subtle mechanisms of the disease do not yet appear to be completely understood. The Counterpoint study in question (Taylor, R. Reversing type 2 diabetes. Practical Diabetes 2011;30:377-378) involved only 11 patients on a 600 calorie per day meal plan for 8 weeks. Three months after the study, glucose levels were re-measured with 8 of 11 participants having normal glucose levels. The researchers concluded that diabetes could be reversed with this strict calorie regimen. This study brings great questions and possibilities for treatment of type 2 diabetes. But, due to the extremely small sample size of the study, a definitive answer about reversing diabetes cannot be made from this study’s result alone. Also, extreme calorie restriction demonstrated in the Counterpoint study is not appropriate for everyone and not advised without medical supervision. There is much to be said about controlling glucose and cholesterol levels with improved eating and exercise habits, especially early in diagnosis. Reducing body weight even by 10% can alleviate the metabolic burden on the body. But, if poor lifestyle habits return, so do elevated glucose and cholesterol levels. <strong>Read more:</strong> <a href="https://www.mylifestages.org/tools/diabetes/diabetes_quiz.page">Are you at risk for pre-diabetes? Take our quiz</a> <a href="https://www.mylifestages.org/health/diabetes/diabetic_meal_plan.page">Download our free Diabetic Meal Plan</a>
Diabetes,

Question:

I came across an article from the London Telegraph regarding a study done involving a crash diet for reversing diabetes. The patients who stuck to this diet reversed their Type-2 diabetes and most of them are diabetes free to this day. Your thoughts?

Answer:

Pam Noonan, MS, RN, CDEPam Noonan, MS, RN, CDEDiabetesSutter Gould Medical Foundation
Expert
Pam Noonan, MS, RN, CDEDiabetesSutter Gould Medical Foundation

Pamela's professional focus includes; diabetes (type 1, type 2, and gestational), pre-diabetes, weight management, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure.

The body’s metabolic processes are altered with type 2 diabetes. Both genetics and lifestyle factors affect the insulin producing cells of the pancreas and insulin sensitivity of body tissues. However, more subtle mechanisms of the disease do not yet appear to be completely understood.

The Counterpoint study in question (Taylor, R. Reversing type 2 diabetes. Practical Diabetes 2011;30:377-378) involved only 11 patients on a 600 calorie per day meal plan for 8 weeks. Three months after the study, glucose levels were re-measured with 8 of 11 participants having normal glucose levels. The researchers concluded that diabetes could be reversed with this strict calorie regimen.

This study brings great questions and possibilities for treatment of type 2 diabetes. But, due to the extremely small sample size of the study, a definitive answer about reversing diabetes cannot be made from this study’s result alone. Also, extreme calorie restriction demonstrated in the Counterpoint study is not appropriate for everyone and not advised without medical supervision.

There is much to be said about controlling glucose and cholesterol levels with improved eating and exercise habits, especially early in diagnosis. Reducing body weight even by 10% can alleviate the metabolic burden on the body. But, if poor lifestyle habits return, so do elevated glucose and cholesterol levels.

Read more:
Download our free Diabetic Meal Plan

Ask our experts your health question(s).