It is my mission to reduce suffering in this world. I’ve suffered so often from the drug my mother was given when pregnant with me, yet I have survived and thrived. I want to help others. If there were a magic wand to ward off disease at the pass, like the terrible type-2 diabetes, wouldn’t you want to know?
There is! It’s food. Food is a super medicine when used wisely.
A huge thank-you goes out to the Department of Medicine at The University of Tennessee Health Science Center and the Department of Preventive Medicine at the The University of Tennessee Health Science Center. Their study on using diet to put 100% of folks with “pre-diabetes” into “normal and healthy” blood sugar ranges rocks!
These folks recruited 24 pre-diabetic adults. This means that their blood sugars were rising but not yet at the level of type-2 diabetes. Rising blood sugars increase your risk of eventually getting diabetes. For each year you are a pre-diabetic, you have a 7 to 10% increased risk of developing outright type-2 diabetes.
The pre-diabetics were put on either a “high protein” or “high carbohydrate” diet. This study was randomized (divided up without bias).
- The high protein diet wasn’t that much protein as much as equal to fat, (30% protein, 30% fat, 40% carbohydrate).
- The high carbohydrate diet (15% protein, 30% fat, 55% carbohydrate) had slightly over half of the food they ate come in the form of carbs.
There were 12 men or women in each group. They ate these diets for 6 months. All meals were provided to try to make sure they didn’t sneak out for a snickers bar.
After 6 months, 100% of the pre-diabetics on the high protein diet had 100% remission! Their pre-diabetes was back to normal glucose tolerance (their blood sugar levels got healthy). In comparison, only 33.3% of the people on the high-carb diet went into remission.
Going lower carb and higher protein (compared to the higher carb group) created improvement in ALL these realms of living in a body suit, and all within just 6 months:
(1) Improved insulin sensitivity
(2) Improved heart health risk factors
(3) Less nasty inflammatory cytokines (molecules that make you tired, hurt, and feel ill, as well as damaging tissue)
(4) Less oxidative stress
(5) More lean body mass
The authors concluded:
This is the first dietary intervention feeding study, to the best of our knowledge, to report 100% remission of pre-diabetes with a high protein diet and significant improvements in metabolic parameters and anti-inflammatory effects compared to a high carb diet at 6 months.
The rate of type-2 diabetes in the U.S. has increased dramatically in just the past 10 years. We are seeing type-2 diabetes in some of our kids, while historically it had just been seen in obese sedentary seniors!
According to the CDC, we have an “epidemic” of both pre-diabetes and type-2 diabetes. National Diabetes Statistics Report from 2014 says there are currently 29.1 million people with diabetes, while U.S. citizens with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) or pre-diabetes is 86 million.
Conversion rate. The Diabetes Prevention Program and ACTNOW3 studies clearly showed that once your blood sugars start to rise, your risks of type-2 diabetes (and all the adverse issues it comes with) are rising, too. This is called rate-of-conversion. Every single year your blood sugars are inching up, your risk of type-2 diabetes is inching up. This is occurring without differences between ethnic groups. This means, though, that all that time while your risk is rising, you can do something “proactive” to take control and ward off this horrible illness.
Eating less carbs and more protein (relatively, this does NOT mean pigging out on all the meat you want) may preserves the β cells that make insulin, which may improve insulin sensitivity and decrease excessive insulin loading after meals.
When we eat “too many carbs, too often,” our insulin receptors get less sensitive and we get exposed to more and more insulin. This makes us continually hungry, tired, inflamed, stupid, and Velcroed to sitting more than moving. It also makes our hormones and neurotransmitters work less effectively, which freezes up our internal physiologic Internet systems. And, as you now see, it takes us dangerously closer to being type-2 diabetics.
The power of food is a moving force that is rolling over the tenacity of medicine to just focus on symptoms, medications, and procedures. It is a thunder to which we should listen and respond. Don’t miss out on the power of what you put into your mouth. And, of course for some of us, what also comes out of it!
BMJ Open Diabetes Res Care. 2016; 4(1): e000258.
Published online 2016 Oct 26. doi: 10.1136/bmjdrc-2016-000258
(CDC) CfDC. National Diabetes Statistics Report 2014. https://wwwcdcgov/diabetes/data/statistics/2014StatisticsReport
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DeFronzo RA, Tripathy D, Schwenke DC et al. Pioglitazone for diabetes prevention in impaired glucose tolerance. N Engl J Med 2011;364:1104–15. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa1010949
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Kitabchi AE, McDaniel KA, Wan JY et al. Effects of high-protein versus high-carbohydrate diets on markers of β-cell function, oxidative stress, lipid peroxidation, proinflammatory cytokines, and adipokines in obese, premenopausal women without diabetes: a randomized controlled trial. Diabetes Care 2013;36:1919–25. doi:10.2337/dc12-1912
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