For years, doctors have been telling patients to keep their weight down for all kinds of health reasons including the risk for type 2 diabetes. Finally, there is a study that showed that weight loss could actually send type 2 diabetes into remission and insulin levels back to normal. The study by researchers at Newcastle University in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom, was published August 2, 2018 in Cell Metabolism.
The researchers used special MRI scans and carried out very thorough metabolic tests and discovered that levels of fat in the blood, liver and pancreas were unusually high in people with type 2 diabetes. However, after participating in an extensive weight loss program these fat levels dropped. As levels of fat in the liver and pancreas were reduced, some of the participants experienced improved pancreatic beta cell functioning in storing and releasing insulin, the hormone that helps control levels of sugar in the blood.
In fact, the researchers claim that when the beta cells are able to recover, this increases the chance for regaining normal glucose control.
The researchers also relied heavily on an earlier study published December, 2017 in Lancet. In this study, about 46% of the 149 participants with type 2 diabetes went into remission after following a weight loss regime. The weight loss program they followed consisted of consuming only 825 calories a day in a liquid form for three to five months and after that they increased the amount of food, while still keeping the calories low. The results of this study showed that the more weight they lost the greater was their improvement.
However, not all the participants in the study went into remission from diabetes, even though they also lost weight. Those 29 participants who did become diabetes-free had not been diabetics for very long, whereas those 16 participants who did not become diabetes-free had been suffering more years from diabetes. Those who had diabetes for 2.7 years were able to go into remission, whereas those who had been diabetic for 3.8 years were not able to become diabetes free. Thus, the researchers stress that anyone who hopes to lose weight to try to go into remission from type 2 diabetes should not waste time. A return to full health is possible, but no one should tarry.
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease has a strong association with prediabetes and fully developed type 2 diabetes and it affects about 30% of the US population.
There are no medicines currently listed as being suitable to combat fatty liver disease, which leaves only lifestyle factors like proper diet and physical exercise.
A plant-based diet like the Mediterranean Diet is recommended for both fatty liver disease and diabetes. However, this study shows that in order to lose liver fat one has to lose weight and not just rely on various foods or diets.
When choosing a skilled nursing and rehab care center for your loved one make sure to choose a facility that puts emphasis on good nutrition, physical exercise and recreational activities like the Ditmas Park Rehab and Care Center in Brooklyn, New York.
NYU Langone Hospital—Brooklyn (formerly named NYU Lutheran Medical Center)
People who are not able to get their diabetes under control and their blood sugar levels normal run the risk of heart disease, obesity, liver disease, strokes, osteoporosis, dementia and even amputations, so this study should give hope that in some cases significant weight loss can lead to remission of diabetes.
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