Struggling with Type 2 diabetes? A rigorous diet could help put it in remission, according to a new report.
Researchers from Scotland recently conducted an experiment, published in The Lancet journal, to determine how a low-calorie diet can affect the disease.
To do so, they examined 149 individuals who’d been living with Type 2 diabetes for up to six years. Those subjects underwent a liquid diet, which included four 200-calorie meals, for three to five months. Scientists then reintroduced them to solid foods and helped them maintain a structured diet for the rest of the yearlong study.
The participants were not asked to adjust their exercise routine, and all antidiabetic and blood pressure-lowering drugs were stopped.
After analyzing the results, they found that about half of the participants were able to get their diabetes into remission. Furthermore, the people in the study lost an average of 20 pounds.
"Our findings suggest that even if you have had type 2 diabetes for 6 years, putting the disease into remission is feasible", co-author Michael Lean said in a statement. "In contrast to other approaches, we focus on the need for long-term maintenance of weight loss through diet and exercise and encourage flexibility to optimise individual results."
While they noted 32 people dropped out of the program, they believe their findings are promising and prove to be an effective way to combat the disease.
"Rather than addressing the root cause, management guidelines for Type 2 diabetes focus on reducing blood sugar levels through drug treatments. Diet and lifestyle are touched upon but diabetes remission by cutting calories is rarely discussed," coauthor Roy Taylor added.
Researchers hope their results will prompt doctors and patients to treat diabetes by putting long-term weight loss methods at the forefront.