A Possible Cure for Type 2 Diabetes

In its early stages Type 2 diabetes is caused by insulin resistance. As the disease progresses, beta cells in the pancreas can fail to make insulin and injections become necessary. Researchers at Newcastle University in the United Kingdom, set out to discover whether the disease could be reversed before progression to beta cell destruction could take place.

Calorie restriction and weight loss have long been recommended for Type 2 diabetes. A study was designed to ascertain whether severe calorie restriction could actually reverse the progression of diabetes.

The study reported in the journal Diabetologia, August 2011, included 11 people diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and 8 healthy people.

They were placed on a 600 calorie (2512 kJ) per day diet and measurements were made…

  • fasting blood sugar levels,
  • the amount of sugar released by the liver,
  • liver sensitivity to insulin,
  • the amount of insulin released by beta cells, and
  • pancreatic and liver fat levels

were measured.

After 1 week of caloric restriction the diabetic participants’ blood sugar levels went down to normal. Liver sensitivity to insulin was demonstrated by the fact there was less sugar released by patients’ livers. After 8 weeks the diabetic patients’ pancreatic and liver fat levels fell more than 75 per cent. By the end of 8 weeks the diabetic patients had lost their insulin resistance entirely. The researchers concluded that all the abnormalities underlying diabetes were reversible with strict caloric restriction.

The study was preliminary, having only 11 diabetic patients, and more research will be necessary before it might be applied to diabetics in general. Restricting calories to only 600 a day,(2512 kJ) particularly when a person has diabetes, should not be undertaken without medical supervision. Without careful monitoring, there is a danger of hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar.

Suggestions from the study: That being said, the study suggests encouraging diabetic patients to restrict their caloric intake to what is prescribed by their doctors.

Try to…

*munch some celery and carrots to fill your stomach and give you a feeling of fullness, and
*have a little fruit to satisfy those cravings for sweets.

A celery stalk with 3/4 ounce of peanut butter has 130 calories (544 kilojoules). One large carrot has only 30 calories (125 kJ) and two cups of strawberries have 100 calories (418kJ). Check the calorie count on granola bars and eat the ones that have fewer than 100 calories. Get bars that are crunchy rather than gooey. Plain popcorn, air-popped (not fair adding butter), or cherries have only 31 calories per cup.

Most people with weight problems do not overeat. They are often the victims of a high-fat diet coupled with a sedentary life-style.