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Medicine United Kingdom Science

'Watershed' Medical Trial Proves Type 2 Diabetes Can Be Reversed (bbc.com) 223

dryriver writes: For those suffering from type 2 diabetes, there is good news. Nearly half of the participants in a watershed trial of a new diabetes treatment were able to reverse their affliction. The method is quite simple -- an all liquid diet that causes participants to lose a lot of weight, followed by a carefully controlled diet of real solid foods. Four times a day, a sachet of powder is stirred in water to make a soup or shake. They contain about 200 calories, but also the right balance of nutrients. If the patient can keep away from other foods long enough, there is a chance of reversing type 2 diabetes completely. Prof Roy Taylor, from Newcastle University, told the BBC: "It's a real watershed moment. Before we started this line of work, doctors and specialists regarded type 2 as irreversible. But if we grasp the nettle and get people out of their dangerous state (being overweight), they can get remission of diabetes." However, doctors are not calling this a cure. If the weight goes back on, then the diabetes will return. The trial only looked at people diagnosed with diabetes in the last six years. Doctors believe -- but do not know with absolute certainty yet -- that in people who have had the affliction much longer than that, there may be too much permanent damage to make remission possible. The trial results have been published in the Lancet medical journal.

'Watershed' Medical Trial Proves Type 2 Diabetes Can Be Reversed

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @09:14PM (#55685193)

    Please read about the work of Dr. Bernestein, Dr Phinney and many others who have reversed T2D using low carb /keto diets .

    1. Type 2 diabetes can be reversed.

    Virta is an online specialty medical clinic that reverses type 2 diabetes without medications or surgery.
    https://www.virtahealth.com/

    2. Dr Bernstein Diabetes solution

    http://www.diabetes-book.com/

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @09:27PM (#55685239)

      My dad was a T2 diabetic on multiple medications. Within a year on a strict low carb diet, his blood sugar was back to normal and he was off all medications (plus lost a lot of excess weight in the process). He's healthier in every way.

      I'm not gonna claim it works for everyone, but the evidence is overwhelming at this point. The established nutritional dogma in the US is simply wrong and it's responsible for a huge number of needless deaths (and increased pharma company profits, funny how that works).

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        This is more or less just an evolution over the old school treatment for diabetes which was basically an extreme diet with little to no carbs, it lost favor when insulin was developed as a treatment because it was considered easier to use than demanding the strict adherence to the diet.

        It's nice that there's finally a diet pointing out that for people who have a still functioning pancreas, that it is possible to get enough of the sugar and fat out of the diet to go back to more or less normal.

      • by RhettLivingston ( 544140 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @11:16PM (#55685581) Journal

        You speak of pharma company profits (and you're right today), but our sugar consumption problem was started by the sugar industry in the 60s using methods straight out of the books of the tobacco industry - buried studies that were linking sugar to cholesterol problems and lobbying for the war against fat.

        I have been on a low carb diet much of the time for several years now with positive results regardless of what my weight is. My serum cholesterol levels dropped by over 50% long before the weight came off.

        I've known several people to get rid of a Type 2 diabetes or prediabetes diagnosis by going low carb. And as to those who say it is difficult to stay on it, it is no more so than any other lifestyle change. I've known many to try becoming vegetarians and fall off.

        Yes, it is easy to fall off of a keto diet that is for weight loss because you're reducing your calories. The key I've found is to just increase your calories for a while without going back to carbs. Also, artificial sweeteners keep the craving for sweets in place. Lose them. You should always plan on just doing keto forever just as a vegetarian plans to eat nothing but vegetables forever. Eventually, the thought of sugar or potatoes will just turn your stomach.

        • There is always a war on something... War on fat, war on salt, war on sugar... It's these wars on other things that allowed sugar to increase, because if you take fat and salt out of a product it tastes disgusting - so you add something else, like sugar...

          So now you have products which use lots of sugar sand other chemicals to make up for the lack of salt and fat, once they start taking sugar out they will have to replace it with something else too so who knows what kinds of weird chemicals they will use for that.

          I'd rather just have natural foods, containing a reasonable naturally occurring amount of salt, fat and sugar and then eat sensible quantities of them. We didn't have massive obesity problems 100+ years ago when people ate natural foods and got a bit more exercise.

          • 100+ years ago most people were literally dirt poor. It probably has little to do with the quality of their diet, but rather the quantity. We've gotten fat because compared to 100 years ago we are all rich, rarely have to walk, and food is cheap. Hell we throw more food in the landfill today than was available for people to eat 100 years ago.

            I'm all for going back to reasonable foods not produced by chemists in a laboratory, but let's not use how humans ate when they were quite possibly shooting rabbits in

            • by Bert64 ( 520050 )

              We hunted rabbits and other animals for food for thousands of years successfully, and managed to find enough food to survive by doing so...
              There's nothing wrong with natural foods, the problem as you point out is excessive consumption of them. But instead of reducing consumption to sensible levels, they used that as an excuse to remove certain components of those foods and replace them with something else (usually worse).

              I'd rather go back to the original foods, and rely on personal responsibility to not co

          • Food tasted like shit back then, too. I used to watch a Youtube channel where they made recipes from 100+ years ago and they sucked. No MSG, no flavor enhancers, no brining, and for some reason they put nutmeg in everything. Natural foods are for the birds.
      • by AK Marc ( 707885 )
        It doesn't work for anyone. A low-cal no-sugar diet will be better for you than a low-carb diet. People on a low-carb diet accidentally correlate with one that does work, but that doesn't mean that a "low carb" diet works. The evidence overwhelmingly shows "low carb" diets work as well as any "low cal" diet.

        The "conspiracy" against "low carb" diets is called "reality".
        • I increased my calorie intake on a low carb/high fat diet and lost weight. "Calorie-in / calorie-out" stupidly naive; could I gain weight eating 3000 calories of hickory saw dust or hay a day?

      • It's not the carbs! Read the study summary:

        "Body fat building up around the pancreas causes stress to the beta cells in the organ that controls blood sugar levels."

        They didn't "cut carbs", yet achieved the desired results. If anything, "cutting carbs" causes you to cut excess sugars (proven to be unhealthy) and highly processed foods (also proven to be unhealthy due to lack of fiber and nutrients). You can get the same affect by eating more vegetables (plenty of carbs) and minimally processes whole grain

    • Same thing, from what the summary says it sounds like they used the Cambridge Weight Plan which IS a low carb diet. https://www.cambridgeweightpla... [cambridgeweightplan.com]
  • by jelwell ( 2152 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @09:15PM (#55685197)

    I gotta wonder how many people drinking Soylent have unknowingly cured themselves...
    Joseph Elwell.

  • Big deal (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rsilvergun ( 571051 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @09:21PM (#55685217)
    call me when type-I can be reversed. My Dad got type 2 because he got fat. Lost some weight and he's fine now. This is something we've known for years. It's fine that it's been proven. Science likes to prove things and that's generally a good thing. But I'd hardly call it watershed.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      That would be Dr. Faustmann's work at Mass. General Hospital. See https://www.eurekalert.org/pub... [eurekalert.org]

      Most Type 1 diabetes is an auto-immune problem, where T cells destroy insuln producing cells after triggering by a virus. Tight blood sugar control for 30 days, coupled with frequent doses of the BCG (tuberculosis) vaccine, stop the auto-immune problem and allow adult stem cells to switch to insulin producing cells and cure Type 1. The treatment is in its second round of human testing: the medication is alread

  • or gin, or whiskey, I'm sure 50% of the type 2 diabetics are gonna be fine with this. For the other 50%, if a packet of gruel can replace McDonald's cheeseburgers then good on them.

    Me? Drunks not drinking? Fatties not fast fooding? I'm gonna guess this is a treatment in search of patients. That said, best of luck to the 10-15% of type 2 diabetics who are neither drunks nor fatties, the study says half of you have a chance.
    • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

      More simply to eliminate type 2 diabetes, stop eating sugar based foods (not the simpletons version of sugar but https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org], soluble carbohydrates and that means the other carbohydrates are also problematic.

      So don't eat sugar, so that you can eat sugar but if you do, you wont be able to eat sugar and repeat. So just get used to a reduced sugar meal plan (not a diet, fill your self up but on the right low sugar foods but keep in minds other things are dying so that you can live so do

      • And just as important, avoid ANY sugar-substitute. Aspartame, stevia, all of it.

        Also, do all your eating in an eight hour window.

    • by pjt33 ( 739471 ) on Wednesday December 06, 2017 @01:09AM (#55685883)

      I admit I've only read the summary, but I came away with the impression that it doesn't offer much hope for type 2 diabetics who aren't overweight.

      • Not all diabetics are overweight. I am not. But you still have diabetes. What this does is make management easier by eliminating carbs. The side effect is you lose weight if you are overweight and otherwise just stable out.
      • There has been some studies showing some people basically can't gain much fat, but if their body still takes in too many calories it causes problems. The result is way too much LDL cholesterol or something similar in their blood... it also either lead to heart problems or diabetes or both, I can't recall.

        These links might be close, but not the exact thing I remember:

        http://time.com/14407/the-hidd... [time.com]

        http://www.nbcnews.com/id/2614... [nbcnews.com]

        http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new... [dailymail.co.uk]

  • I fully expect... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by geekmux ( 1040042 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @09:27PM (#55685237)

    ...this common sense approach to curing diabetes to be fully debunked by the Medical Industrial Complex. Those profiting from this affliction wouldn't have it any other way.

    That said, I also fully expect people to be lazy enough to not put forth the effort to lose weight to cure their ailments either. The underlying cause and prevalence of diabetes in society still needs to be addressed. Unfortunately, there's no easy cure for I-don't-give-a-fuck disease.

    • by Aighearach ( 97333 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @10:10PM (#55685393) Homepage

      There is no cure, and there never will be.

      This story is not about a cure, it is about lifestyle-induced remission. It only works as long as the lifestyle changes are in place.

      • by AlanObject ( 3603453 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @10:40PM (#55685455)

        There is no cure, and there never will be.

        It only works as long as the lifestyle changes are in place.

        What a bizarre objection. I've seen it before and it never ceases to astound me. Consider what you are saying:

        Behavior A produces undesirable outcome X.

        Behavior B produces desirable outcome Y.

        Reverting from Behavior B back to Behavior A produces undesirable X again.

        So therefore Behavior B is "faulty" somehow and not a real remedy for X!

        Has it ever occurred to people making that argument that "Behavior A" basically amounts to eating poison (highly refined carbohydrates) which should never have been followed in the first place? Apparently not.

        • by Trogre ( 513942 )

          Nice false dichotomy there.

          Highly refined carbohydrates are poison only to people who can't properly process them (diabetics).

          Excessive consumption of those highly refined carbohydrates often leads to diabetes. Presumably that's the Behaviour A you mentioned.

          The desired outcome (a "cure") would be for people who go through the horribly restrictive and unpleasant diet in Behaviour B can return to a normal life and adopt Behaviour C (consuming highly refined carbohydrates in sane amounts) like the rest of us

          • Highly refined carbohydrates are poison only to people who can't properly process them (diabetics).

            Oh, right. So what you are now saying is that high-fructose corn syrup, artificial trans-fats, unfermented soy products and machined grains are all perfectly healthy food choices as long as you can "properly" process them. Whatever that means. I suppose it means that you don't show ill effects for an extended period.

            Go for it dude. With that logic you'll go far.

      • If not being overweight is a "lifestyle change" then it's a cure. That's like saying not hitting yourself in the arm will put bruises into remission. That's not remission, it's just not hurting your body and making it unable to function properly.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by TheConway ( 4695045 )
        so keep the lifestyle change in place. Type 2 diabetes isn't a disease, it's self-harm, intentional or otherwise. It's akin to saying that not holding your head under water is a cure for drowning.
        • by gsslay ( 807818 )

          But only if you continue to not hold your head underwater. Go back to holding your head underwater and the drowning returns!

      • Determining the cause of an ailment and showing that removing the cause removes the ailment sounds like a cure to me...
    • by c6gunner ( 950153 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @11:22PM (#55685611)

      ..this common sense approach to curing diabetes to be fully debunked by the Medical Industrial Complex. Those profiting from this affliction wouldn't have it any other way.

      As much as I love watching you conspiracy tards go off on your rants, you may want to stop and consider the fact that the medical community has been telling people for decades to stop getting fat because it causes type 2 diabetes, amongst other health problems.

    • fully debunked by the Medical Industrial Complex

      What would they debunk? Their own advice that a major contributor to Type 2 diabetes is weight gain? The evil MIC has been providing this very advice here for many years.

      But hey, big pharma baaad.

      • fully debunked by the Medical Industrial Complex

        What would they debunk? Their own advice that a major contributor to Type 2 diabetes is weight gain? The evil MIC has been providing this very advice here for many years.

        But hey, big pharma baaad.

        They told you to not gain weight because it can cause diabetes.

        They avoid telling you how to cure diabetes. They instead chose to treat that problem with never-ending pharma solutions.

        And there are over $375 billion reasons why in the US, with billions more growing every year.

        • Have they cured your selective hearing or own sampling bias? The advice has always been clear, if you have diabetes you need to lose weight to help manage it. Same for high blood pressure.

          Just pretending that advice wasn't there and then spitting out some dollar figure doesn't make it so.

          • Have they cured your selective hearing or own sampling bias? The advice has always been clear, if you have diabetes you need to lose weight to help manage it. Same for high blood pressure.

            It's painfully obvious why the industry profiting from perpetual treatments avoids the word "cure" like the plague. Even you own words of "manage it" implies that once a person is afflicted with diabetes, it could never actually be cured permanently with proper diet and exercise to maintain a healthy weight. Previous studies are also rife with this same legal-speak to avoid damaging revenue streams.

            Just pretending that advice wasn't there and then spitting out some dollar figure doesn't make it so.

            I never pretended that advice wasn't there. Advice can easily exist. It can also be easily ignored or supp

  • Long known (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Doub ( 784854 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @09:27PM (#55685241)
    This news is bullshit. I've had type 2 diabetes for at least 10 years, and since the beginning my doctors told me it would be cured if I got back to a normal weight/diet. And I mean it's not rocket science, it's obvious if you think for a second about how type 2 diabetes works: pancreas can only produce so much insulin, eat more carbs than that and it stays in the blood (also having your pancreas strain at 100% all the time and dying out explains why it transforms into type 1 over time).
    • Totally Agreee (Score:5, Interesting)

      by jimbrooking ( 1909170 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @10:04PM (#55685369)

      In 2008 I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes an my doc insisted I start insulin treatment immediately. My response: No thanks. I lost 40 lbs over the next three months by changing my eating habits - less fat, many less carbs, (but some "good carbs", etc., and walking a couple of miles a day. My next blood sugar level test was normal - high-normal, but within the normal range. And so it has remained for almost 10 years. A1C tests have been rock-steady and well within the normal range for years. It's not breakthrough medicine, it's determination and making the choices you know you should make. I weigh myself every morning and if I'm over my target weight, I eat a little less that day. If under, I can splurge with a few crackers and cheese. I cook for myself, so know exactly what I fuel my body with. Not religious/obsessive about weight, just sensible.

      And the best part is that I (am American and) spend 3-4 weeks a year in France and eat and drink whatever I want: no weight checks there. When I get back I'm a few pounds heavier, but returning to the old regimen, they're all gone in a couple of weeks.

    • explains why it transforms into type 1 over time

      That's not the way it works. People who are Type 2 don't become Type 1. They are two completely different diseases that just happen to share symptoms.

      Type 1 occurs when your immune system attacks the insulin producing cells in your pancreas. Type 2 is usually caused by high levels of glucose in your blood because of insulin resistance, or being overweight.

      Some people who have Type 2 can't control their glucose levels through exercise or oral medications, so they require insulin injections. This doesn't

      • The confusion here is that type II can lose the ability to make insulin. They are still type II but the symptoms are similar to type I. No insulin. It doesn't repair itself iether. So for all it's worth, you are just like a type one.
  • by Tablizer ( 95088 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @09:38PM (#55685271) Journal

    As an anecdote, my doctor asked me to drink more water for an unrelated condition, and I lost about 15 pounds. Everyone is different, but worth a try if you are a bit chubby.

    The downside is that I have to always use the restroom. And, restrooms are not always easy to find.

  • "Sachet" does not mean "Packet". I've seen this a number of times recently and it's driving me nuts. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]
  • Clickbait (Score:5, Funny)

    by minogully ( 1855264 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @10:27PM (#55685415) Journal
    Finally something can ACTUALLY be cured using one weird trick that doctor's don't want you to know.
  • The team at IDM (https://idmprogram.com/blog/) and (https://intensivedietarymanagement.com) among others has specialized in exactly this: using fasting and food input based methods to manage insulin response and reduce or eliminate hyperinsulinemia. Even Time magazine in September ran an article on this. http://time.com/4940354/revers... [time.com]
  • This sounds a LOT like the FMD (fast mimicking diet) they were insisting on a while back. Under it all, what they were really saying then, and what they're really saying now, is: lose weight, and your metabolic dysregulation will resolve itself. SURPRISE!
  • My wife, who was overweight, developed Type 2 Diabetes.

    She had take these god-awful tablets called Metformin which have horrendous side effects on your bowel movements - not funny at all.

    Her solution [as a nurse] was to undergo Gastric Sleeve Surgery. A bit drastic but she saw it as act now or literally die early. On admission her Blood Sugar was around 12

    After her surgery her blood sugar dropped to 4-something and has stayed there ever since - she tests it regualrly.

    She was under the BMI threshold
    • She had take these god-awful tablets called Metformin which have horrendous side effects on your bowel movements - not funny at all.

      I was first diagnosed with Type II in March of 2002, and put on Metformin. Yes, I was overweight, but not any more. As it happens, my diagnosis was recently changed to LADA (a form of Type I that only manifests in adults) probably caused by indirect exposure to Agent Orange in '72. I've been taking Metformin for fifteen years now, along with other medications, and I've ne
  • Solution: Don't eat Carbohydrates.

    You will get some anyway but they less you use insulin the better for Diabetics.

  • by Vegan Cyclist ( 1650427 ) on Tuesday December 05, 2017 @11:34PM (#55685653) Homepage

    There have also been many trials with low-fat, whole-food vegan diets with tremendous success reversing Type-2 Diabetes long-term. There's quite a lot of carbs in the diet, in fact the majority of calories come from carbs, yet the diabetes is reversed, and this has been repeated many times over the last few decades, just not much to be made from telling people basically to 'eat your veggies'. A surprising number of people would rather pop pills and inject insulin sadly...but it's not necessary if you want. I'd rather eat 'real food'.

  • Who didnâ(TM)t know this? Itâ(TM)s literally in every book about Type 2 diabetes.

  • You body needs it.

  • Four times a day, a sachet of powder is stirred in water to make a soup or shake.
    They contain about 200 calories, but also the right balance of nutrients.

    Noting that 1 scoop from a tub of Soylent [amazon.com] is 200 calories.

  • I like the general agreement here about reducing carbs. That's the obvious first step in lifestyle adjustment. Keto is ideal if you're also overweight. (Note that many diabetics are skinny.) Fat isn't mentioned much here but it's essential. Eat lotsa fat! Easy on the protein tho.

    But there's a problem running through this thread. Yes sugar is evil. Yes you have to test blood sugar. But sugar isn't what's ravaging your body! It's insulin for type 2 diabetics. More and more insulin floods your body every time

    • This is pretty correct, although it's only the glucose component of most sugars that causes insulin release. Sucrose ("sugar") is half glucose, half fructose. The fructose is processed in the liver before it can enter the bloodstream, where it is stored as glycogen and triglycerides. These come with their own problems, but insulin release is not one of them.
  • by aepervius ( 535155 ) on Wednesday December 06, 2017 @02:33AM (#55686037)
    It is known that in some species, like cat, you can revert type 2 diabetes, but that is AFAIR because they regenerate their beta cell in their lagerlans islet something different than with human (incidentally that is why you should check regularly cat for Blut sugar, some DO rarely revert back to normal and giving them insulin can bring them to dangerous hypoglycemia). That is not what they are seemingly saying, what they do is adapt the body weight, but normally diabete type 2 human is about the body / liver cell getting resistance to insuline, so losing weight should not change that. I do wonder what's at play here.
  • read Dr. Joel Fuhrmann's books ... type 2 is a modern sickness, caused by lifestyle and overabundance of (the wrong) food ... switch to healthy foods, and you'll get rid of things like type 2, high blood pressure, etc ...

  • What I've heard is that once diagnosed one is considered to have it even if under control and not needing to medicate. And that loosing weight and having a proper diet does indeed reduce or eliminate the need for any treatment.

    In other words what is actually new here? Am I missing something or have this knowledge not been verified in studies before?

  • I was diagnosed with type 2 about 5-6 years ago. This was a 'random' diagnosis as it was detected in a blood test intended to check cholesterol levels.

    I have never had a single of the symptoms usually associated with type 2:
    - No excessive thirst
    - No excessive urination
    - No hunger
    - No tiredness
    - No unexplained weight loss
    - Normal bowel movements
    - No strange pains in the extremities
    - No foot ulcers or similar issues.
    - No eye problems.

    I'm never really sick (except for a cold maybe once a year) and I feel fine.

  • I've come to the conclusion that nobody in the diet (and exercise) industry is a true foodie. They all see food as nothing more than fuel. The rest of the sane people actually enjoy what we eat.

  • Reverse implies a return to health, a cure. The study actually discovered people could put diabetes into remission which means the disease is on hiatus but it could come back. Important distinction.

    Since 80% of type 2 diabetes is caused by obesity, the simplest way to avoid it is not be fat. It's mostly a self inflicted disease. If someone can follow a calorie restricted diet to put diabetes into remission, then maybe they have the willpower to not eat so much and exercise more and not get in that situati

  • My findings:

    There's some hope here.

    Most I've done is four and half days. Even after a simple two day fast I get better glucose readings for a couple of weeks. When I did the four and half day one I had better readings for a month.

    I'm gearing up to do a couple of weeks, I think I can probably cure myself outright if I bear down and go long term

    I don't do 100% fasting, I still take my medication (all oral), I put vitamin C in my water and take Apple Cider Vinegar. The Apple Cider Vinegar by itself can knoc

  • My father-in-law had diabetes for years. Due to co-morbid high blood pressure, he had heart problems that eventually landed him in the hospital.

    After that, he finally started listening to the doctors. Within a year, his blood sugar was under control and he was no longer considered diabetic. All he did was switch to a healthier diet. Give up the cookies and ice cream---and know when something is just as bad for you, like fancy Starbucks "coffees". Eat your damn vegetables and stay away from all the carbs.

    Thi

  • For those of you who have followed your doctor's orders to manage your diabetes and discovered, it just gets worse over time.. here's another option.. https://www.facebook.com/group... [facebook.com] See the pinned post which has a link to all of the literature. The idea is that not only do you eat low carb, but eat 70% fats as an energy source. Moderate protein. Basically it's a keto diet. The diabetes isn't cured but since you are only eating 20 carbs a day, you are only needing insulin for 20 carbs a day. If your bo

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