This Extreme Weight Loss Diet Could Cure Diabetes, Say Researchers

By on August 15, 2013
Have type 2 diabetes? A man from the UK says a new diet developed by scientists helped cure his diabetes–in just 11 days.

Richard Doughty, who resides in London, weighed a modest 147 pounds when he was first diagnosed with type 2 diabetes earlier this year. Having no previous family history of diabetes and self-described as a “healthy eater,” the news came as a surprise to the 59-year-old.

“I was stunned,” says Doughty. “I have always been a healthy weight, 5ft 7in and 10st 7lb. I had no family history of diabetes, ate a healthy diet, never smoked and I did not have a sweet tooth.”

But what’s remarkable about his story is that he didn’t turn to drugs to help control his diabetes–instead, he decided to search for a way to reverse it. He found that solution in a diet plan created by scientists at Newcastle University in northeastern England.

The diet itself is considered controversial–because it recommends eating only 600 calories a day.

“To have people free of diabetes after years with the condition is remarkable–and all because of an eight week diet,” says Newcastle University professor Roy Taylor. “While it has long been believed that someone with Type 2 diabetes will always have the disease, and that it will steadily get worse, we have shown that we can reverse the condition.”

Following the advice of researchers, Doughty ate 800 calories a day–just 200 more calories than the recommended amount–of which 600 calories came from meal replacement shakes. An extra 200 calories came from green vegetables. Taylor also advised Doughty to drink three liters of water per day.

He followed the diet for 11 days, going from 147 pounds to 124 pounds. Remarkably, that’s all it took to reverse his diabetes diagnosis.

“I stuck to the diet for 11 days and reduced my blood sugar to a healthy non-diabetic level,” says Doughty. “It has remained that way for the past year and I have kept to just under 9 stones.”

Researchers believe the extreme diet causes the body to go into starvation mode, causing the body to burn fat stores for energy. When this occurs, the pancreas and liver become unclogged, allowing blood sugar levels to return to normal.

In 2011, they tested this hypothesis in a study funded by Diabetes UK, which recruited 11 people with type 2 diabetes to go on a two month 600 calorie diet. While hunger pangs and fatigue were common symptoms, researchers discovered that their blood sugar levels had normalized just after one week of dieting.

An MRI scan also showed that fat levels in the pancreas had decreased from 8 percent to 6 percent–considered a normal level. Researchers also say the pancreas was able to make insulin following the diet.

However, despite its success, researchers don’t recommend that everyone follow this plan.

“We welcome the results of this research because it shows that Type 2 diabetes can be reversed, on a par with successful surgery without the side effects,” says Dr. Iain Frame, director of research at Diabetes UK. “However, this diet is not an easy fix and Diabetes UK strongly recommends that such a drastic diet should only be undertaken under medical supervision.”

Readers: Would you go on this diet?

Diet Reverses Type 2 Diabetes – NCL.AC.UK
UK Man Cures His Diabetes with Starvation

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