Type 2 Diabetes is a lifestyle ‘disease’ based on dietary choices. It is NOT hereditary. It is estimated that over 50% of Americans now have Type 2 Diabetes or are Pre-Diabetic. With pandemic levels of this killer disease, you would think that there would be more awareness of how to stop and reverse it. Unfortunately, there is no profit in healthy people. Our doctors are taught to treat symptoms with pills and procedures over nutrition education.
In fact, physicians have very little educational training when it comes to nutrition. Only 29 percent of U.S. medical schools offer students the recommended 25 hours of nutrition education education, according to a 2015 report in the Journal of Biomedical Education. On average, U.S. medical schools offer only 19.6 hours of nutrition education across four years of medical school, according to a 2010 report in Academic Medicine.
So when it comes to your diabetes, I would strongly recommend not going with advice from your physician. Their recommendation will most likely be to take Metformin and Insulin injections. Both of these medications have serious side effect! Metformin Poisoning can cause severe lactic acidosis, cardiac arrest, pancreatitis, hemolytic anemia, and gastrointestinal distress. Insulin Injections cause weight gain, only to exasperate the problem and also has other side effects including headache, hunger, weakness, sweating, tremors, irritability, trouble concentrating, rapid breathing, fast heartbeat, fainting, or seizure (severe hypoglycemia can be fatal).
Type 2 Diabetes causes other health complications including:
- Neuropathy (which can cause numbness in the feet)
- Peripheral Vascular Disease which can cause gangrene in the extremities and lead to amputation.
- Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a serious condition that can lead to diabetic coma, or even death.
- Kidney Disease and Kidney Failure leading to dialysis.
- High Blood Pressure which raises your risk for heart attack and stroke.
- Gastroparesis which causes food to digest too slowly and may cause you to eventually need a feeding tube.
- Stroke – your chances of having a stroke are 1.5 times higher than in people who don’t have diabetes.
- Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Nonketotic Syndrome, or HHNS, is a serious condition which causes severe dehydration that will lead to seizures, coma and eventually death.
- Alzheimer’s Disease is now being called Type 3 Diabetes.
- Erectile Dysfunction – I have an article on Erectile Dysfunction Here
- Endothelial Dysfunction (And thus cardio vascular disease) – I have an article on Endothelial Dysfunction here.
Continuing on with Type 2 Diabetes erodes your quality of life and is a death sentence. With all of these complications, and now knowing that you can reverse it, why would you want to continue your lifestyle and listen to the advise of a doctor?
Is it possible to reverse Type 2 Diabetes? The answer is absolutely YES !
In this Clinical Study, using the most rigorous standards in a Randomized Clinical Trial, they were able to show how a Plant-Based Dietary Intervention Improves Beta-Cell Function and Insulin Resistance. In this Clinical Trial, they were able to show that a “low-fat vegan diet improves glycemic control and cardiovascular risk factors in a randomized clinical trial in individuals with type 2 diabetes.”
In this Randomized Control Trial, called the Ma-Pi 2, which was a completely plant based macrobiotic diet which was high in whole grains, vegetables and legumes, and fermented products, with no animal products (no diary either) and no added sugars, which led to reduced markers of insulin resistance and inflammation. In addition, a significant reduction in insulin-like growth factor-1 was observed in the Ma-Pi 2 subjects vs the controls. The Ma-Pi 2 diet, in both uncontrolled and controlled short- and medium-term trials conducted in patients with T2DM in several countries and continents, has been found to achieve a speed of metabolic control that has not been reported in studies of any other diets.
In this Analysis of 3 studies, dietary data was collected on 69,949 women from the Nurses’ Health Study (1984-2012), 90,239 women from the Nurses’ Health Study 2 (1991-2011), and 40,539 men from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (1986-2010) The conclusion is that their study suggests that plant-based diets, especially when rich in high-quality plant foods, are associated with substantially lower risk of developing T2DM.
In this well written, peer reviewed paper by Dr. Michelle McMacken (also guest post on this blog ‘5 Reasons Why I Don’t Recommend A Keto Diet’) called ‘A Plant Based Diet For The Prevention and Treatment of Type 2 Diabetes‘, she concludes that:
Plant-based diets address the bigger picture for patients with diabetes by simultaneously treating cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death in the United States, and its risk factors such as obesity, hypertension, hyper-lipidemia, and inflammation.
It is also possible to reverse Type 2 Diabetes with severe caloric restriction on a low carb diet. The issue with low carb diets are multi-fold. Whole grains and plant fiber are protective against cancer and heart disease. A high fat low carb often called “ketogenic diet” causes your cholesterol to increase which leads to atherosclerosis and heart disease. They can also cause kidney damage from too many animal proteins in our diet. If you want to know more detail about the benefits of a plant-based vs. ketogenic diet, I would encourage you to read the paper by Dr. McMacken above.
Note that NOT ALL CARBOHYDRATES ARE EQUAL! Eating plant fiber from beans, nuts, legumes, leafy greens, vegetables, fruits and whole grains have a lower glycemic index than does processed and refined carbohydrates. You can control your diabetes on a HIGH CARB diet that is from whole plant foods. Eating foods that digest slowly and don’t spike your insulin levels are the best route for reversing insulin resistance.
Too much fat in the diet induces insulin resistance. For more information on the mechanisms of insulin resistance, please view this video on NutritionFacts.org https://nutritionfacts.org/video/what-causes-insulin-resistance/
I would also highly recommend MasteringDiabetes.org
As always, please feel free to reach out to me directly if you have any questions.
P.S. – Here is a great cook book!
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